Middle ground

Islam, like any other religions, is not inherently violent, Aslan asserts


Middle ground
by varjavand

How to Win a Cosmic War
God, Globalization, and the End of the War on Terror

by Reza Aslan


How to Win a Cosmic War is Dr. Reza Aslan’s newly released book after the successful publication of his first. In this book, he offers a detailed examination of Jehadisim and Islamism as two widespread Islamic movements with different ideologies and agendas. Although religious fanaticism has been blamed by the majority of observers for the violence and the deadly attacks against the U.S. and other Western countries, Dr. Aslan tries to defend religion as a decisive force that, if utilized prudently, can play a constructive role in mobilizing the masses toward a peaceful emancipative cause. No religion, including the religion of Islam, promotes violence and sanctions unjustified attacks against innocent people, “… no religion is inherently violent or peaceful; people are violent or peaceful” the author says. Throughout the book, Reza explains how both the ill-conceived doctrine of the Bush administration and the misguided beliefs of the organized Jihadist groups like Al-Qaeda have changed the nature of the war on terrorism and transformed it into a cosmic war, a divine struggle with an important mission that is neither political nor economic; it is rather the fulfillment of a much bigger spiritual cause. “Once cast as a cosmic war, a conflict conveys a sense of importance and destiny to those who find the modern world to be stifling, chaotic and dangerously out of control” one researcher says. A war that cannot be won through military might should have not been waged to begin with. According to Dr. Aslan, the best way to win a cosmic fight is to “refuse to fight in it.”

Throughout his book, the author keeps reminding us of the unavoidability of religious movements, especially in many Muslim countries, as a legitimate development that, if given the opportunity, may evolve into a democratic and responsible political force or governing body as we have seen in Turkey. The greatest threat to world peace, he believes, does not come from Islamic movements but from “religious trans-nationalist movements” best typified by the nascent borderless movement branded in the Unite States as Jihadism.

In his book, the author carefully examines the historical roots of the religious movements in different Muslim countries, especially in Egypt, and the events that have led to the rise and the demise of many such movements. His meticulous research on the theoretical foundation of such movements is indeed scholarly, revealing, and enlightening. In particular, he tries to explain why the two Islamic movements, Islamism and Jihadism, once close cousins, have split into two separate, opposing, or even hostile, movements with different worldviews. He writes that today “Islamism remains a nationalist ideology, whereas, most Jihadists want to erase all borders” and become global. In a nutshell, Islamism, like Harakat al-Muqāwamat al-Islāmiyyah, Hamas in Gaza is a national movement that draws its strength from the suffering of Moslem Palestinians and their unbearable living conditions under the Israeli occupation. In other words, the plight of Palestinian people has become a bonding factor, a drive to the creation of Hamas and similarly the Hezbollah. Jihadist, on the other hand, is a global movement that does not recognize any boundaries. It “seeks a deterritorialized Islam” according to the author, thus launching a cosmic war which “… in its simplest expression refers to the belief that God is actively engaged in human conflicts on behalf of one side against the other.” And, it is because of this divine involvement that ultimate victory is presumably guaranteed for the Jihadists.

The treatment of Muslims by the Bush administration, the war with Iraq and Afghanistan, and the doctrine of preemptive strike against Islamic countries have given the Jihadists the necessary grounds to represent themselves as the sole defender of the faith against the forces of those who contemplate the obliteration of Islam, the Crusaders in particular, thus justifying their destructive campaign against the U.S. and its allies. “There is no doubt that the policies of the Bush administration have only strengthened Jihadism and increased its appeal, particularly among Muslim youth.” However, the author expects that with a new administration in power and our new president “who finally understands that the only way to win a cosmic war is to refuse to fight in one” there is a hope that “the ideological conflicts against militant forces in the Muslim world” will be reformulated “not as a cosmic war between good and evil but as an earthy contest between the advocates of freedom and the agents of oppression.”

In so far as the war on terrorism is fought as a cosmic war, it cannot be won through conventional warfare because there are no specific enemies with a clear agenda, no one knows what the Jihadists want and what they ultimately try to achieve. “There is no central front to the war on terror because their (Jihadists’) identity cannot be centered on any territorial boundaries” and “indeed, it is their utter lack of interest in achieving any kind of earthy victory that makes them such a distinct and appealing force in the Muslim world.” Furthermore, Jihadism is a social movement as the author emphasizes repeatedly. “Yet whatever military success the United States and its allies have had in disturbing al-Qaida’s operations and destroying its cells have been hampered by their utter failure to confront the Global Jihadism as a social movement.” Accordingly, success in the war on terrorism “requires a deeper understanding of social, political, and economic forces that have made Global Jihadism such an appealing phenomenon, particularly to Muslim Youth.” “It is a battle that will be waged not against men with guns but against boys with computers, a battle that can be won not with bullets and bombs but with words and ideas.”

Dr. Aslan’s rigorous examination of the key factors that transform young men into zealous Muslims willing to sacrifice their lives, determined to challenge the existing world order, and serving as the conduit for horrific attacks against innocent human beings helps us to better understand Jihadism and why it should be considered a social movement. The author argues that it is the demonization of Muslims in many Western countries like the UK that changed otherwise peaceful Muslims like Hasib Mir Hussain - one of the four terrorists who carried out a suicide attack by detonating a bomb on a bus that exploded in Tavistock Square in London killing 13 including himself - into violent Jihadists. “It may have been anger and humiliation and a deep-seated feeling of inequality that led Hussain to Global Jihadism” he declares.

Pivotal to the central theme of his book is the argument that “in this new, emerging century, as the boundaries between religion and politics are, in part of the world, becoming increasingly blurred, we can no longer afford to view the religious movements as inherently different from any other groups of individuals who have linked their individual identities together with the purpose of challenging the society.” He continues to say: “The truth is that religion has certain qualities that make it a particularly useful tool for promoting social movement activism.” Religion can provide unity among people who belong to different ethnicities, cultures, languages, etc. “most significantly, religion’s ability to sanction violence, to declare it permissible and just to place it within the cosmic framework of order versus chaos, good versus evil, is indispensable to the success of social movement.”

He seems to suggest that while the fear of Jihadism is warranted, the fear of Islamism is overblown. Islam, like any other religions, is not inherently violent. It is the humiliation and the hectoring of young Muslims that adds fuel to the fire of violence and not the teachings of Islam per se. Thus, terrorism is a symptom of much deeper problems that drive some Muslims into despair and anger and into taking revenge out of desperation. We want to make sure the sources of terrorism do not remain undetected or untreated. Imposition and the use of force make Jihadists resentful, defensive, and more determined.

In the final Chapter of his book, Reza Aslan presents his “Middle Ground” viewpoint, his optimistic argument that the Islamist groups if allowed to take active part in social and political processes “albeit within certain accepted parameters” not only soften their otherwise uncompromising views but “they can evolve into responsible political actors committed to democratic ideals of human rights, women’s rights, government accountability, the rule of law, pluralism, and judicial reform.” Doing so also weakens the support for the extremists according to the author. Therefore, given the chance to choose between bad and worse, “Islamism is the preferable middle ground. It may in fact be the antidote to Jihadism.”


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Islam unlink many other

by Amir1 (not verified) on

Islam unlink many other religions is inherently violent.


A bunch of baloney!

by Sassan (not verified) on

This guy is such a phony! Are you kidding me about Turkey being an example of a "legitimate" Islamic movement that evolved into a democracy??? Are you that much of a deceptive "scholar?" In other words, why are you trying so hard to support the IRI (in a sneaky and underhanded way) by saying that if only we left the mullahs alone, Iran would one day turn into Turkey!

Turkey was turned upside down by a secularist, Ataturk, who intentionally set his country on a path of secular democracy without regard, and to the detriment of any "Islamic movements." And Turkey, mind you, does not have the cancer of the shiite establishment (akhunds and ayatollahs) to deal with!!!

Who is this character, Aslan? I wouldn't be surprised one bit if he's an "aghazadeh," with a mullah or two in his ancestry. Every thing he says is a form of deception, aimed at fooling the westerner, not necessarily the muslims who I would hope know better.

Aslan says that Islam is not inherently violent. Are you kidding me? Islam is warrior belief-system. They conquered everyone through force! The famous prophet of Islam himself fought 78 battles, 77 of which were offensive. In fact, all of the three Abrahamic religions are violent, except that the New Testament, with the arrival of Jesus, puts far more emphasis on "turning the other cheek," whereas Islam still advocates "an eye for an eye."

If people read the Quran with an objective eye, without fear of being turned into a piece of stone by Allah, then they would see it for what it is, a bedouin belief system that is designed to oppress and succeed at all costs, even if it takes brute force and violence. That's the truth. If you want fairytales, then go buy Aslan's books.



by varjavand on


Among so many comments this book review has generated, yours is perhaps one a few positive and supportive ones. I have noticed how the other commenters have attacked this brilliant man, often unfairly, for the reason(s) I do not quite understand. Criticizing is one thing, attacking and accusation is another.

I like his book, read it carefully, underlined one or two sections of almost every page because I thought they present really important points. The only serious question I have for Mr. Aslan is that why a book which is totally devoted to Islamic movements is utterly silent on Iran, there is not even a single mention of Iran nor any reference to the IRI in the entire book. I asked this question from him during live chat yesterday - I joined later around 8;30 because of previous commitment - his answer was that “his book was about Jihadists and it has nothing to do with Iran”. I sincerely expected a more encompassing answer. I believe this question deserves a closer scrutiny. May be he is trying to be politically correct or perhaps he has another book in mind on the subject of Islamic movements in Iran.

The main theme of his book is an elaborate comparison and contrast between the Jihadism and Islamism. Jihadists are the bad guys and the best way to deal with them is to ignore them according to Reza. Islamists however, are the better ones and we should give them a chance to thrive, and if we do so, they will eventually evolve into a responsible democratic governing power, he believes. Such dichotomization is not, of course new, many religious scholars have earmarked on such a daunting task just to repair the prevailing aggressive view of Islam in the West by trying to unveil the other face of a true, pacifist, caring, Islam. Whether such an undertaking has led to any fruitful outcome remains to be seen. I personally believe that such reforms may not bear any fruit unless they as initiated, or at least sanctioned, by the trusted religious leader, ulama.

Understandably, Reza analyzes the critical issues from the perspective of someone who has lived comfortably in one of the most affluent, most democratic nations on the face of earth and as someone who is protected by the secular laws of this nation. However, people in most Islamic countries do not have a choice but to submit to an unpleasant acquiescence and accepting what they are tolled are the God-given institutions whose validity should not be questioned or challenged by ordinary people.

I believe Reza is sincere is his opinion that Islamic movements will lead to democracy and his attempt to prove that Islam is not militant, and if it is, it should be blamed on other factors not the teachings of Islam. His favorable views and well-crafted justifications however, may reflect the fact that he has received his moderate version of Islam from the Western sources which may be very different from the Islam imposed by religious rulers and practiced in many prominent Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran. He is probably unaware of the kind of desolation that gloomy brand of Islam has created for people like my folks back home. They have lived all their life in deprivation and poverty believing, as Mullahs have always told them, that this world was indeed the “prison of the pious people” and the preparation for the other.

That, however, should not give us an excuse not to listen to him and not cherish his remarkable enterprise. As I wrote elsewhere, I believe the best way to reduce the tension, which has been aggravated by the Bush’s war in Iraq, and Afghanistan, is to open up sagacious dialogue between Muslims, Christians, and Jews and to educate others about the best kind of Islam as Reza is trying to do, the kind that is moderate, pacifist, inclusive and spiritual, the positive sides of Islam; its rich heritage which have been overlooked, ignored, or misconstrued in the west. The more we educate other people about this kind of Islam, the less intimidating it becomes.

The scholars like Reza, the more moderate Muslims, have a unique opportunity here in the US, where the freedom of speech is guaranteed, to bring some of these issues into public domain with the purpose of clarification, fair and impartial analysis, and not to spend any more time on rehashing the old stories, on blame game, denial and repeating the already known, mostly negative, stereotyping, but to focus on the positive themes of our religion.

Reza Varjavand  



Excellent Book

by Sofia (not verified) on

I have been looking forward to reading this book for for the past two years. Reza Aslan wrote a wonderful book, "No God but God," an enlightening and well researched account of the history and evolution of Islam. It challenges many of the negative accounts, stories and claims surrounding the religion of Islam and tries to shed light on what actually happened over the centuries. I was wondering if he could top this book and he certainly did.

His new book does an excellent job as Mr. Varjavand describes: "[it] examines the historical roots of the religious movements in different Muslim countries, especially in Egypt, and the events that have led to the rise and the demise of many such movements."

Dr. Aslan has done an incredible amount of research and along with his creative writing skills makes this book difficult to put down. Mr. Varjavand's review of this book is brilliant and really captures the essence of this book.

I have had the opportunity to meet Dr. Aslan and will say he is an extremely polite and friendly person; he is open to any comments and suggestions people put forth and his knowledge of Islam is indeed incredible. I do not know how the Live Chat met and others here might have had a different experience.

I have attached a link to my note and I hope you will take the time to read it. Apparently, while Dr. Aslan might have been born into the Islamic faith, he did not embrace the it until his later years. He His mother and father eventually accepted the Christian faith and were very disappointed when he accepted Islam. Moreover his father abhored the Islamic faith.


Whether or not you agree with Islam as a religion, this book is worth reading as it does provide meticulous research regarding historical events during the past 200 years.


Thanks to you too capt_ayhab ...

by Bache Tehrooni (not verified) on

... for being smart, honest and decent. Damet garm.


Anoony joon

by KouroshS on

Oh it was not?

Let's see.

 You say Make sure you have Sheeshaki on your side, A nickname i picked eons ago, and one on which you picked on for so long, and under which you called me a right-winger, AIPAC supporter, and i am supposed to believe it was not directed at me? LOL har chi shoma begi . Vali khodemmoonim... Khodeti:) No big deal, But There is a limit to playing games and fabrication.


I think it is still there. Go to the bottom, the very bottom of the "most discussed" list and it should be there. If you could not find it, I can send you a copy:)








by Anonymous121 (not verified) on

Seems like Mr. Imani thinks that he is Khamenei not Montazeri.

Ari Siletz

Jane Doe, humiliation does cause violent behavior

by Ari Siletz on

This is true even in traditinally peaceful movements

1. Here's a youtube video of gay riots in San Francisco in 1979, complete with car burning, window smashing, the works. This is evidence for the correctness of Aslan's view. 

2.Aslan does not mention anywhere that the humiliated group's violent behavior is linked to whether or not the group opposes the humiliation of other groups. This is evidence that your criticism of Aslan's point is a non-sequitur.



by jane doe (not verified) on

"The author argues that it is the demonization of Muslims in many Western countries like the UK that changed otherwise peaceful Muslims like Hasib Mir Hussain - one of the four terrorists who carried out a suicide attack...."

This is referred to as "blaming the victim". It's like saying men become rapists becuase they are "demonized" as rapists or white people lynch black folks cause they are "demonized" as racists.

"“It may have been anger and humiliation and a deep-seated feeling of inequality that led Hussain to Global Jihadism”

Anger at inequality fuels terroism? Hmm, I've never seen Al-Queda reps showing up to show their support for gays or women. If he was so mad about inequality he has a lot to work with in his own community. Was he outraged about honor killings? The executions of gays? If so, why wasn't he acting against those? If not, then I guess he really had no problem with inequlity after all.

persian westender


by persian westender on

do you know what happened to the Faramarz Fateh's blog? It seems he has deleted all..!




by Anonym7 (not verified) on

Kourosh jAn, that matalak was NOT directed at you. I used that word in a generic sense. As we Esfahanis say, you don't have a sarghofly on the usage of that word ... and BTW Kourosh jAn, we Efhanies are careful with the word love, we use it for khoobroian, and our good poet K. Esfahani says:
TavaZoo ra ze **re mA beiamooz ke
har jA khoobrooee deed barkhAst!

Be motavazee Kourosh_jAn.


Nashenas e haftom

by KouroshS on

Ananeeemous joon

Sorry ke i did not get your matalak until now. Hmm... You are a very intriguing person. I mean come on. How can anyone us totally, 100% right wingers, according to your paranoid we stand any chances against Hezbollahie- do ateeshe, You and your basiji brothers in US and Canada? 

But you know that love you right?



Dears Bache Tehrooni, Ms. IRANdokht

by capt_ayhab on

I tend to agree with you guys in regards to worst kinds of Insult Mr. Imani's gang member has been dishing out.

If there is going to be any action taken, Mr. Imani, his troops and writers should be first line defendants of it, for the charges ugliest remarks, character defamation and harassment they have been making to anyone who does not wish to be a racist, with psychopathic tenancies for genocide of entire Muslim community,  like Mr. Imani's gang.

Thank you both and anyone who stands against racist group such as Mr. Imani. Entire community should stand to expose organization like Mr. Imani's group.



P/S I wonder what Southern Poverty Center would think of characters like Mr. Imani and his foot soldiers?


Mr. Imani, Mr. Javid

by capt_ayhab on

Mr. Imani, you have been complaining about attacks on your boss and you are have been threatening with law suites and such the publisher gentleman, Lets see who is more vulgar, YOU Mr. Imani or others;

Your comment on this thread on chronological order:



1. by Amil Imani on

* This new generation of Useful Idiots also live in liberal democracies,
but serves the cause of Islamofascism—another virulent form of
totalitarian ideology.

* No radical barbaric act of depravity is unthinkable for Muslims in dealing with others.

* The “moderate” mainstream of Islam has been outright genocidal from inception.

* Muslims are taught deception and lying in the Quran itself


Then comes to surface your true color:

2. by Amil Imani on

* We hold you accountable for any intimidation, harassment caused by these irresponsible characters  and thugs who have no honor, no family, no dignity, no pride and no identity.

* Iranian.com has become the hob for Hezbollahi and Hamas terrorists


3. by Amil Imani on

* Mr. Javid, you need to grow out of this mentality and stop your wild
chasing after people. Use this forum for enlightenment, not for
savagery. If you want us to leave the Iranian.com completely, please
e-mail us and we will be more than happy to leave, but if we stay, we
ask you to chain your wild dogs.


4. by Amil Imani on

* We will never attack them. [not at all !]

*. Mr. Javid, you need to stand up and defend your forum from these savages.

*. Allowing these thugs to roam and personally attack a poster is a crime and we surely can handle this legally.

Seems like you are the one who is committing a crime with your vulgarity sir.


5. by Amil Imani on

* Many people who post here are internet junkies, riffraff, Hezbollah thugs.


6. by Amil Imani on

* Mr. Imani has been viciously attacked by these beasts for so long and without any warnings coming from the site owner. 


Mr. Imani's agent, I should suggest that you take a look at mirror before making any comment. Obviously who ever objects to your racist mentality is subject to ugliest form of character defamation and name calling.

Mr. JJ, I do support the freedom of speech, However  Mr. Imani and his gang of KKK thugs should not be allowed freely to defame anyone who is against racist group like his.





Amil Imani

by Dariush (not verified) on

Didn't I say the only one following your prophecy is your shadow. Now he is posting some comments in your defence.
Don't get upset prophet Amil! You are free to speak your mind and we are free to speak ours.
What happened to the charges against other Gods?


Amil Imani, WTF?!!!

by Anonymous111 on

I can see "Mr. Imani" dispatching his troops to respond to comments on a piece that he has written, but I do not see the logic or purpose of him telling his minions to go out and comment on articles that are written by others.  It just does not make any sense.  Does he read the article and then dictate the comment(s)? Why can't the foot soldiers just use their own names (or post anonymously for that matter)?  Since "Mr. Imani" does not have the time to read these comments, the responses surely cannot have come from him.  They must be written by his troops.  So, why post under his name if he doesn't know about the contents?  This whole thing is just a little fishy. 



Mr. Kane

by capt_ayhab on

You noted:

[by kane on I did not call Christianity religion of love and peace, I simply refered to its teachings which are different from Islam's.]

Due respect this is what you said in your first commnet:

[by kane on I respect you as a great thinker and scholar, but i like to tell you Islam, unlike any other religion, is violent.]

Could you have said any clearer? I doubt it sir.





Outright rejection

by varjavand on

Ari, your point is well sensible. I too believe that the outright rejection of religion, of Islam, is neither practical nor productive. Therefore, Mr. Aslan’s prescription of Middle Ground may hold some validity.

Even though it seems quite unfashionable to speak of Islam, on this forum, as a potentially positive and democratic power, whether we like it or not, Islam has been a decisive force throughout our history. Even if a secular government comes to power in Iran, religion is not going to go way, It is not going to remain silent, and it certainly continues to challenge the prevailing political establishment. Especially, considering the momentous strength the Islamism has gathered during the past thirty years, it is almost impossible to push aside Islam and to keep it out of public life in Iran. Though ideally, I wholeheartedly believe that religion can be more effective as a source of spirituality, inspiration, hope, and wields more respect as an external moral authority.

I believe instead of complete rejection of Islam, it is incumbent upon us to search for creative ways to inject the light of plausibility, practicality, and modernity into Islam through every possible crack we can find on the wall of dogmatism that has encircled this religion causing its isolation. I think that is what perhaps what Reza Aslan is trying to propose.

As you know I am not a religious expert, therefore I don’t know whether there is a statement in Islam equivalent to the one you quoted in your comment. If there is, it may serve as the guideline for the relationship between Islam and a secular government.

Reza Varjavand

Anonymous Observer

All Religions Suck

by Anonymous Observer on

They are tools of oppression, supremacy, subjugation of the masses and easily justifiable violence.  That’s why I’m an atheist.  I can sleep comfortably at night knowing that I do not support ideologies that have been responsible for the murder of hundreds of millions of human beings throughout history.  That being said, while I see religions as I describe them above, I do not believe that the characteristics that I just mentioned should be applied to the followers of any particular religion for many, many reasons that I am too tired to discuss.  In sum, live and let live, and judge people as individuals and not as stereotypical caricatures of your pre-conceived notions of what a Muslim, a Jew, a Christian, a Zoroastrian—or an atheist for that matter—should act or look like.      


Dear Amil Imani,

by Q on

Why don't you set aside this cherade of a shell game. I doubt very much "Amil Imani" is even a real name, but to go on with this laughable line that it is not you yourself (the same guy who criticized George Bush for providing only $85 Million of regime-change funds to Iranian opposition), but that you have a "group" "conveying your message" on Iranian.com to "englighten us" is just absurd.

Who do you think you are, Ayatollah Montazeri?

OK, I can possibly believe you may have some students or something answering unfair accusations in the comments. But the first comment you left on this thread was a highly subjective opinion. You have other people write your own opinions too??? Why don't those other people just use their own name or some other account name?

At this point, it's just an embarrassment. If this is your ego's way of dealing with criticism and not taking responsibility, you must by now get the message that it only makes you look a paranoid dellusional Islamophobe.


Thanks Amil Imani & 'company'

by Bache Tehrooni (not verified) on

One last logical assessment regarding your behavior on this site:

Who serves IRI's interests best on this site, Amil Imani or Bache Tehrooni?

Bache Tehrooni is not a registered user, so I/he can not even go back and make changes to my entries, but he can. All my words are still there, unchangeable, for all to read. Now what is Imani really stand for?

Analysis phase 1:
On the surface he is extremely anti-IRI and has always been very much anti-Islamic too. In a fool's eye this seems in order. Islamic Republic of Iran = Islam, so if you hate one, you should hate the other one too.

Analysis phase 2:
Most of the effective opposition to IRI has been from non-religious people so far. But for quite some time now, even the religious people have been stepping in because they think that IRI is misrepresenting Islam in a bad way.

Analysis phase 3:
IRI can always use the Chinese example and slaugther the non-religious opposition. But can it do the same with the religious opposition too? Very difficult.

Analysis phase 4:
What if IRI could create a tool named 'Amil Imani' in this case and have him continue attacking IRI in his usual form. This way he could keep his value as an opposition member. Let him tell the world that he cries for 'Murdered Childern' and all the usual charlatan theatrics. Then have this 'tool' savagely attack the religion of Islam, dear to all moslems.

Analysis phase 5:
Any moslem who starts to think that IRI is really bad, is now cornered and feels threatened. They might start to think that if IRI is changed, their religion will be lost too and they maybe hunted down and killed by the next facsist government.

Analysis phase 6:
The 'tool' has successfully turned away some of the opposition to IRI. Again some religious ones might not be detered by this 'tool', but if enough are turned away, then the day could be a success.



by Parsy (not verified) on

to “ex-programmer Craig”
I have been wondering about this too that if Islam does not promote hatred then why the peace loving Muslims around the world don't try to change their image by denouncing the oppressed nations of Islamic world but I have to add that after the September 11th the only Muslims in an Islamic state who came out in solidarity with the victims were Iranian people who gathered in the streets and lighted candles for the victims unlike the Palestinians and other Arab countries who came out in the streets celebrating and cheering the killings of the 3000 innocent people.

ex programmer craig

I disagree

by ex programmer craig on

The author argues that it is the demonization of Muslims in many
Western countries like the UK that changed otherwise peaceful Muslims
like Hasib Mir Hussain

It seems to me the author is putting the cart before the horse, there. This doesn't really seem like a "chicken and egg" riddle that has no clear answer. Theer are some things that are known, and teh author appears to have willfully inverted cause & effect, for reasons possibly known only to him.

I started thinking of Palestinians as the "enemy" in 1972, when I was 8 years old. I started thinking of Iranians as the enemy in 1979, when I was in high school. I started thinking of Muslims in general as the enemy in 1983 when I was in the Marines. As far as I know, I've never killed a Muslim. But Muslims have killed friends of mine. Unjustly. And they claimed they did it for their God. I'm not going to accept that Westerners deserve to get victimized in the name of Islam, and that any complaints they have about that will just cause them to be victimized further. That's the argument of a bully whoseeks to intimidate people into compliance. If Muslims want to change their image, it is up to them clean up their own house. It's not appropriate for Muslims to tell non-Muslims how they should feel about the violent behavior of Islamists.



Amil Imani

Mr. Varjavand

by Amil Imani on

Mr. Imani himself does not read the comments nor does he have the time to do so. There are a group of us helping Mr. Imani to convey his message to the Americans as well as to the Iranians. The only reason we have a blog here is for enlightening Iranians from the darkness of Islam. The master of this forum has refused to publish Mr. Imani’s articles on the main page, so we are happy to have our own little blog.  Even there, Mr. Imani has not been immune and safe from being terrorized, intimidated and harassed by the Hezbollahi thugs.

Mr. Imani has been viciously attacked by these beasts for so long and without any warnings coming from the site owner.  (This tells us a lot and you connect the dots.) We have never ever responded to any attacks except on your blog and not to the unknown vulgar thugs, but directly to the Master of this site who makes money by creating crises and drama instead of civil dialog. 

We apologize for spamming your blog. We thought after years of deliberate attacks on Mr. Imani, we let this man who is responsible and accountable for malicious attacks, make a note of it. We will never bring ourselves so low to speak directly to these pro-IRI terrorists and murderers of our children in Iran.

All we ask from the site owner is to keep his wild-dogs in a cage.

Ari Siletz

Carter makes a strong point

by Ari Siletz on

Varjavand, your comment on Steven Carter's book offers a sensible thought, "... a greater threat may result when religion is forced into the position of complete sub-services [sic], with its voice being utterly disregarded in public debate. Moreover, citizens are being drawn into accepting this notion that religious faith has no bearing on civil responsibilities. Accordingly, the prevailing cultural codes of right and wrong have a higher command on us than do the privately held convictions of conscience." It is possible that secular governments actually benefit form the training in ethics and morals that religion (or "culture") provides. However, is there an equivalent in Islam of of Jesus' statement, “Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s?” Critics of Islam say there is not. But a case can be made that Shiism in particular is open to such thinking, though the idea is not phrased in Jesus' beautiful and succint terms. To give a hint of how this is case can be made, keep in mind that Shiism and Christianity are both messianic religions, waiting for a divine order to eventually replace temporal rule. In fact, the Ahamadinejad faction seems threatened by this idea, which is the reason they insist their order is standing in for the Shiite messiah even though they are only temporal rulers.


Insulting is not the real issue here

by Bache Tehrooni (not verified) on

After all it is Amil Imani and his likes that are the ones who insult everyone else and now they highlight the issue of 'insults' to get away from the main topic.

What is it wrong with this guy who constantly says:

"we hold you accountable for any thug attacking Mr. Imani"

Are people naive enough to think that 'Insults' are the real problem here. Threats, Lies and Deception are the real problem here. Let's focus on that!

Another thing; When Imani and his gang call others 'pro-IRI' or 'Hezbollahi', that sound more terrifying that 'facist' because Iran right now is under 'IRI' and 'Hezbollahi'. But the fact remains that when Imani insults people with these names he should not get more acceptability from them. If he does, only God can help Iran!

The words 'thugs', 'pro-IRI' and 'Hezbollahi' are not insults that Imani uses? I think that those words are the worst insults. Don't you?

Thanks for your intelligent words. It's refreshing to hear the sound of reason is amplifying throughout this site.


Freedom of Speech

by Samani (not verified) on

Everyone is free to express his/her opinions in this website and no one should insult another one. This is freedom we enjoy all in the western world and in great America. I am happy to live here in freedom.
Long live 4th of July!

Please do not insult Mr. Imani or Mr. Varjavand or Mr. Aslan. Let them talk freely and enjoy the freedom we have here in Europe and US.

Cheers to all,



Looking into the future

by Bache Tehrooni (not verified) on

When Adolf Hitler rose to power, he was actually elected democratically! He made a lot of promises and had a lot of good words. The writings were on the wall but the German people ignored his evil side.

The German people were so much fed up with the horrible state of economy and their lousy government that they ignored the hate and evil of fascists and the deceit that Hitler and his gang had imbeded in their agenda.

Hitler actually did not conceal his hatred of the people of another religion or his other screw-ball ideas, but the people just ignored it! They actually agreed with him!!!

All I am saying is that it might be close to the end for IRI. Do we want to allow Iranian fascists to be the new power brokers in the new Iran or do we want a real humane democracy, free of hate and evil?!

I understand that Iran now and Germany of that time are not exactly the same, but the principal still stands.

When do we have to tell someone that You Sir do not represent us?! We do not want you on our side! Or do we want to go through another revolution with our eyes closed and get screwed for another 30 years?


Mr. Imani Like you, I have

by varjavand on

Mr. Imani Like you, I have been occasionally subjected to unfair comments, accusations, and ad hominem attacks in this site. I believe the best way you can deal with those who make such comments is not to legitimize them by responding to their comments.



Really like your view. Some

by rogerdikkenson on

Really like your view. Some real matter's are discuss in here. Thanks for sharing with us. The information which you have provided in here in utterly important.
Nick From