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Books and Documents

Interview

Fethullah Gülen on Hizmet Movement, Hanafi School of Islam and the Relationship between Islam, Politics and Democracy
Manuel Almeida

Let me put it blatantly: If Muslims can freely cherish their religion, perform their religious duties and rituals, establish institutions defined by their religion, teach their religious values to their children or other aspirants, speak their mind about their religion in public debates, and make religious demands in compliance with laws and democracy, then they do not have to try to establish a religious or “Islamic” state....

AAP and the Indian Muslims
Humra Quraishi

Together with Kejriwal's anti - Modi stand, the fact that he is talking of the Bijli - Paani - Sadak issues has helped build the connect. For let’s not overlook the fact that a great majority of the Muslim population of this country survives in under - developed Bastis and Mohallas and ghettos. He is talking of relevant issues which affect their daily lives.…..

My initial reaction was disbelief. My work is always in verite and focused solely on characters. We started following eight characters in January 2011 in Tahrir Square. Their trajectory would determine whether there would even be a film. It's been a tough road but a truly gratifying one. There were so many other great films that were shortlisted [for the Oscar nomination] and just as deserving…..

Qadeer Baloch: ‘If There Is a Referendum in Balochistan, People Will Vote For Independence’
Meena Menon

People are calling me a RAW [Research & Analysis Wing] agent and they think I get money from some agency. I don’t know this RAW and I have not seen or met anyone from there. I don’t need funds — there are over 19,000 missing people and their families contribute to the organisation and we also raise contributions.....

 

What we have is the war of terror. And the terrorists really have been the UK and the US armed forces and the governments behind them. I actually think that the risks have escalated. We have hypocrisy of the war on terror has been played out in the places like Libya and Syria where the West, the UK and certainly the US has been allied with Islamic fundamentalists. Those who were on the ground and killing civilians, raping women and children, the guys that killed Muammar Gaddafi and obviously those tens of thousands of foreign mercenaries in Syria, these are all supposedly our enemy and yet we have been supporting them, we have been financing them.....

 

Most Ulema Are Reactionary, but We Need To Reach Out To Them and Explain the Urgent Need for Their Role to Be Progressive: Peace Activist and Writer Dr Javed Jamil
Dr Javed Jamil

Muslims are the most backward and poor people of India. Though there are certain structural biases and prejudices against them, they themselves have given up the struggle that could lead to their betterment and progress. Muslims have media like Peace Tv and Etv Urdu and scores of journals and newspapers in print, but it is a sign of their apathy that Muslims never discuss national Issues, confronting the whole country. The minority syndrome is so deeply embedded among Muslims that they can’t think beyond smaller community issues confronting them. The need of the hour is to develop media that can be an alternative to the mainstream media and discuss national issues. Till then the stereotyping by media will continue and Muslims will suffer…..

Interview on Dr. John Andrew Morrow’s Spiritual Journey into Islam and the Life of Prophet Muhammad
Craig Considine

Eventually, I came across the Qur'an, and I was convinced that Islam was the religion that had always resided in my heart. I remember the actual moment that I recognized my primordial nature. It was during a ski trip to Vermont. I had been reading the Autobiography of Malcolm X for weeks. I finished it in the car, closed the book and said to myself: "I am a Muslim." I was sixteen years of age. From that moment forward, I would be an observant Muslim known in Islamic circles as Ilyas 'Abd al-'Alim Islam…..

However, once Germany develops its own Islamic theology, then this will provide impetus for debates on Islam and modernity in Turkey and other Islamic countries. These will be the mid- to long-term effects once these chairs have found their place in the German academic landscape. Critical perspectives and methods from Christian theology, as well as comparative aspects of culture and religion may play a role. This will enrich Islamic theology....

 

Pervez Hoodbhoy: ‘Running Nuclear Reactors near Karachi Can Be Worse Than Storing Bombs’
Mohammad Shehzad

The risk may be medium or even low, but the consequences of an accident are extremely high because of the plant’s location. Nevertheless, our government has been successfully enticed into the deal because the Chinese are dangling a $6.5 billion soft loan – which is greater than the annual budget of the Pakistan Army. This means that we will not seriously consider alternative means of energy production, such as wind power, which exist aplenty in Pakistan but need capital……

 

Abdullah Anas: Jihad, Then and Now
Tam Hussein

We realised it was not about carrying Kalashnikovs and calling for fighters. I remember when I came back from my first trip to Mazar-i-Sharif in 1984, and writing a report to Sheikh Abdullah Azzam saying we needed a hundred Muslims with the following skills: aid worker, political [operative], mentor and proselytizer, in addition to being a bridge between the Afghans and the outside world. These men were to be like ambassadors in the twenty-nine provinces of Afghanistan. Unfortunately, we failed in this; otherwise the outcome might have been different.....

 

Fr. Cedric Prakash SJ: Never Forget the Gujarat Massacres and Narendra Modi’s Role
Fr. Cedric Prakash SJ

Modi is a hard-core Hindu fundamentalist-schooled in their ideology -and in word and in deed he is simply their iconic figure...This portends ill for geo-politics in the South   Asian sub-continent. The core ideology of Hindutva -we are aware is the establishment of a Hindu Nation-State where the minorities will be treated as second-class citizens. Their methodology is fascist and they will do anything, in sheer desperation to achieve their narrow goals…

 

Malala Wants To Try Politics Following Bhutto's Example
Malala Yousafzai

We can bring the change. And by becoming a politician I want to show girl and every person in Pakistan and all over the world that it does not mean that you need money or you need property, or you need a high status in a society to do something. You can do it. You just need to be a human being and you need to be yourself. And that's all that you need for doing something. And I think that's what I need. I don't need money. I don't need a high status. I don't need to be from a very bigger family, middle class family. I think that it should be an example to everyone….

 

My novels are deeply rooted in the spirit of my hometown Mecca, an unexplored world. I draw upon the city's myths, history and philosophy, and all that in a language that has to be deciphered like Sufi texts. It's almost impossible to translate......

 

The Quran and Social Justice
Ceyda Nurtsch

One of the first things that the Quran objects to is wealth. "Karim" means generosity. That's why we carried a banner at the protest with the words: "Property Belongs to God. Down With Capital". I'm often accused of dressing up what is actually a fanatical religion. But for me, religion is based on the two fundamental principles of fairness and the distribution of property. If a religion doesn't ask questions about distribution and justice, it's a dead religion....

 

Iraq Veterans on Falluja: City Was 'A Microcosm of The Iraq War'
Erin McCann

But the wider question is whether peace is possible without the partition/federalisation of Iraq as a unitary state. It is a shame to see the security situation deteriorating in Iraq but after 10 years of people saying "get out" it is churlish to now say you shouldn’t have left…..

 

The year 2014 marks 100 years since the start of World War I. What was supposed to be the war to end all wars turned out to be one of the many bloody conflicts since then. The death count of the past 100 years has been more than that of any other century and our region, for one, continues to be mired in violence. Pakistan came into existence amidst bloodshed, fought wars with India and became involved in proxy wars, all the while facing internal divisions. September 11 and the wars that it spawned are some of the biggest and bloodiest stories of our times....

 

‘What Will Define the Middle East Is No More the Arab Spring, But a New Nuclear Geopolitics and Iran’s Bigger Role’, Says Ramin Jahanbegloo
Ramin Jahanbegloo

It opens the way to a new re-writing of the political map of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. It also re-integrates Iran as a political entity and not only a security problem into the international community as a legitimate regional power. Though only a first step, the agreement has important implications. It could ease the diplomatic relations between the US and Iran, but it could also prepare the way for coordinated humanitarian relief and a political solution in Syria....

 

The main challenge is keeping the developed world committed to Afghanistan, especially to the women and children, so that the progress that has been made in the country, especially in women's attainment of human rights, isn't wiped out by conservative forces. The progress is real and significant, especially in terms of the obstacles that have to be overcome. It proves that the Afghan people are behind that progress….

 

Arab World Regards US and Israel as Threat to World – Noam Chomsky
Noam Chomsky

It’s hard to imagine that any settlement would not allow some position for the Assad government in a transitional stage that is kind of a minimum condition under which they would even participate. But it is very hard to see if the rebels can even find representation that would appear in Geneva if they want to. It is a very shaky possibility, but it is actually the only one that I can see that has any hope of saving Syria from a plunge to even worse catastrophe than today……

‘It’s A Myth That Muslim Rulers Destroyed Thousands of Temples’
Ravati Laul

The big temples that were politically irrelevant were never harmed. Those that were politically relevant — patronised by an enemy king or a formerly loyal king who becomes a rebel — only those temples are wiped out. Because in the territory that is annexed to the State, all the property is considered to be under the protection of the State. The total number of temples that were destroyed across those six centuries was 80, not many thousands as is sometimes conjectured by various people…….

Yasmine Hamdan: 'I Am a Nomad'
Yasmine Hamdan

I don't think music that is based on geographical borders is something that needs to be understood. It needs to be felt. The fact that you are Arab doesn't mean you feel the music more than somebody who does not understand Arabic....

 

Meet Meena, the 13-Year Old Muslim Girl Trained By Her Brother to Be A Suicide Bomber and Die For Islam
Orla Guerin, BBC’s Pakistan correspondent

They said: “The bomb will be connected with a button, or something like the remote control of a TV. We will give you this kind of remote, and you will go to the place. “We will also give you a mobile, and we will ring that phone, and press the remote, and you will be blown up with this bomb.” They told me they would use such a large amount of explosives that no-one would even know if it was a man or a woman.....

13-year-old girl Meena says her own family tried to turn her into a suicide bomber. She told her story to BBC’s Pakistan correspondent Orla Guerin.

 

Progressive Muslims Desperately Need Resources: Tahir Gora
Ryan Mauro

Traditional Islamic organizations get millions and millions dollars from Saudi Arabia, Iran and even our Western governments to spread their 6th century medieval ideology, gender inequality, armed jihad and so on. We don’t have a penny to counter these issues, but still we are contributing as much as possible, which is the need of our times. No business entrepreneur, no government looks at us. Politicians, media and policy makers run after traditional Islamic organizations....

Likes of Prem Ji Should Represent Muslims: Ali Asani
Ali Asani, professor of Harvard University

But 1980 onwards, a new Jihad came up after Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. To get rid of communism, US along with Saudi Arabia created, trained and established Jihadis spending billions of dollars. Thereafter, Jihad became a complex issue exploited by fundamentalists. In the US, there are several de-radicalisation programmes for religious scholars where they’re given other views....

 

‘There Is No Shortcut to Ending Militancy, and Even the Worst Militants Have Human Rights’
Raza Rumi

Securing data is extremely difficult in FATA because of the secretive US program, the lawless and remote nature of the area, and the active control and suppression of accurate testimony by local actors including the Taliban, Al Qaeda linked groups and Pakistani security authorities. This issue is so politicised that it is difficult to take claims on face value. That’s why our research is based on extensive, discreet research from multiple eyewitnesses interviewed on three separate occasions by separate investigators who have worked with us in the past – not just on drones, but abuses by the Taliban and others, abuses against women and so on…..

 
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