Perhaps the greatest existential threat to the freedom and safety of America and the rest of the western world is the threat of radical Islam from groups such as ISIS, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah and the plethora of other groups that aim to convert or kill anyone who disagrees with their doctrine.

The far left has attempted to minimalize the threat presented by radical Islam and the terror associated with it, presenting those who perpetuate it as a small minority of the population who are detached from mainstream Islam. But are those assertions true? Here are five leftist myths about radical Islam debunked.

Myth 1: There is no political agenda behind radical Islamic terror.

Many politicians reduce radical Islamic terror attacks to senseless acts of workplace violence, without acknowledging a greater political agenda behind the attacks. However, there is a political agenda behind radical Islamic terror, and it is terrifying.

As Raymond Ibrahim, author of The Al Qaeda Reader explains in the PragerU video “Radical Islam: The Most Dangerous Ideology,” radical Islam is totalitarian and expansionist in nature, much like communism and fascism in the 20th century. He also explains that practitioners of radical Islam believe that Islamic law, or sharia, should dominate the world.

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Radical Islamists believe that sharia law means that apostasy, or converting out of the Islamic faith, should be punishable by death, that homosexuals and adulterers should be executed and that speaking out against Mohammed should also be a punishable offense. The laws that radical Islamists want to instill are antithetical to the laws of western society as they do not allow for free speech, religion, press or any of the other basic rights that our society is based off of.

Myth 2: Radical Islam is not a threat to the west.

Radical Islam has been responsible for the airline hijackings of September 11, 2001, the Pulse Nightclub shooting of July 2016, the Paris attacks of 2015, the Canadian mosque shooting of last month and a plethora of other attacks on the west.

While terrorist organizations such as ISIS, Hamas and Hezbollah are relatively small in membership, they have huge Islamic juggernauts backing them. The Center for American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), for example, has received money from Hamas and in 1994, its founder Nihad Awad, voiced support for the terrorist organization.

The Islamic Education and Research Academy (IERA), a tax-exempt charity in Britain has been accused of aiding radical Islamic terrorists from Syria. Members of IERA have also been recorded condoning wife-beating, encouraging stoning for those who convert from Islam, expressing anti-Semitic sentiments and saying that the 9/11 attacks “were not unjust.”

Myth 3: Only a small minority of Muslims support radical Islam.

While the number of Muslims in the west who support radical Islam, is the minority, it is a sizeable minority. According to Telegraph, in 2006, 41% of Muslims in the United Kingdom believed that the country should be governed by Islamic law, or sharia. 20% of Muslims surveyed believed that the 7/7 bombings of 2005, in which 52 people died, were justifiable.

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A separate poll conducted by Comres in early 2015 revealed that 27% of British Muslims had “some sympathy for the motives behind the attacks on Charlie Hebdo in Paris” and that 45% disagreed that “Muslim clerics preaching that violence against the west can be justified are out of touch with mainstream Muslim opinion.” Additionally, 11% of Muslims felt “sympathetic toward people who want to fight against western interests.”

Radical Islam is much more prevalent in the Middle East and North Africa than it is in the west. According to a 2013 Pew Research poll, 74% of Muslims in the region condoned sharia law, while 49% believed that sharia should not only apply to Muslims. 78% of Sharia supporters in the Middle East and North Africa believe that Religious courts should oversee family law and 56% believe any apostates should be executed. 87% of Muslims in the region believe that women must always obey their husbands and 47% do not believe that a woman should be able to choose if she veils.

Sources:
http://www.pewforum.org/2013/04/30/the-worlds-muslims-religion-politics-society-overview/
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1510866/Poll-reveals-40pc-of-Muslims-want-sharia-law-in-UK.html
http://www.comresglobal.com/polls/bbc-radio-4-today-muslim-poll/
http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/03/22/polling-muslims-in-the-west-increasingly-sympathise-with-extremism-terror/

Myth 4: Terrorism is not condoned by the Qur’an:

There are several verses in the Qur’an that condone violence:

Qur’an 3:151: “Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority”

Qur’an 8:12: “I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore, strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them.”

Qur’an 9:14: “Fight them, Allah will punish them by your hands and bring them to disgrace…”

Qur’an 9:123: “O you who believe! fight those of the unbelievers who are near to you and let them find in you hardness.”

Qur’an 48:29: “Muhammad is the messenger of Allah. And those with him are hard against the disbelievers and merciful among themselves”

Myth 5: Mohammed would not condone radical Islam.

According to Tabari 9:69, Mohammed said “Killing unbelievers is a small matter to us.” In Tabari 7:97, Mohammed instructs his followers to “Kill any Jew who falls under your power.” Ibn Ishaq: 327 reads “Allah said, ‘A prophet must slaughter before collecting captives. A slaughtered enemy is driven from the land. Muhammad, you craved the desires of this world, its goods and the ransom captives would bring. But Allah desires killing them to manifest the religion.’” In Ibn Ishaq: 990, Mohammed approves of decapitation in the name of Allah. In Ibn Ishaq: 992, Mohammed instructs his men to “kill those who disbelieve in Allah.” Besides being a warlord, Mohammed practiced polygamy, had sex with a nine-year-old and ordered a woman to be stoned.

To reiterate, not all Muslims practice or believe in these ideals. There are millions of peaceful Muslims around the world. However, there are also many radical Islamists who wish to wage war with the west and all non-Muslims, and they pose a serious threat. In fighting radical Islam, we must understand the motives behind practitioners’ attacks and understand the very real threat that radical Islam poses to our society.

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Mark Jennings is a student at the University of Arizona. He has a passion for politics and political leadership and has attended conferences with Turning Point USA, the American Conservative Union and the Jeff Utsch Foundation. Mark is also the secretary and a founding member of Turning Point USA at the University of Arizona.

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