May 6th, 2014
10:50 AM ET

Hey Boko Haram, pick up a Quran and bring back our girls

Opinion by Arsalan Iftikhar, special to CNN 

(CNN) - Hey Boko Haram, have you read the Quran lately?

Most of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world have, and we're utterly certain that it condemns kidnapping young girls and selling them into slavery - no matter what you say "Allah" tells you.

According to Amnesty International, several hundred schoolgirls - both Christian and Muslim - between the ages of 16 and 18 were abducted at gunpoint on April 14 from their rooms at the Government Girls Secondary School in Chibok, Nigeria, where they had been sleeping.

The armed extremist group Boko Haram, which roughly translates to “Western Education is Sin,” claimed responsibility for these mass kidnappings and threatened to sell these young girls for as little as $12 into sex slavery or forced “marriages” to members of their group.

"I abducted your girls. I will sell them in the market, by Allah," a man claiming to be Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau said in a video first obtained by Agence France-Presse.

"There is a market for selling humans. Allah says I should sell. He commands me to sell. I will sell women. I sell women," he continued, according to a CNN translation from the local Hausa language.

'I will sell them,' Boko Haram leader says of kidnapped Nigerian girl

As a Muslim human rights lawyer, it is obscene and absolutely un-Islamic for these lunatic human traffickers to invoke the name of God while kidnapping young girls and threatening to sell them into sexual slavery.

The leaders of Boko Haram have clearly never read the Holy Quran, which states quite clearly that “oppression is worse than murder” (2:191) and that nobody “shall force girls to commit prostitution” (24:33).

They must have also missed the numerous times that the Prophet Muhammad categorically stated during his life that women or children were never to be harmed under any situation.

“These abducted schoolgirls are my sisters,” said 2013 Nobel Peace Prize nominee Malala Yousafzai recently in a New York Times interview on the Boko Haram kidnappings.

“The international community and the government of Nigeria (must) take action and save my sisters. … It should be our duty to speak up for our brothers and sisters in Nigeria who are in a very difficult situation.”

Nigeria abductions: 6 reasons why the world should demand action

The real heroes are young Muslim women like Malala Yousafzai and these latest Nigerian schoolgirls who continue to assert their basic human rights to education in the face of danger every day.

These amazing young women will help to empower and motivate our young Muslim girls to become their countries’ next generations of scientists, technologists, engineers and doctors.

In the meantime, the rest of the world’s Muslim population will continue to denounce extremists like Boko Haram.

And we will  proudly stand in solidarity with these missing young schoolgirls in Nigeria, and every other woman around the world who continues to fight for her basic human rights.

Arsalan Iftikhar is an international human rights lawyer, founder of TheMuslimGuy.com and adjunct professor of religious studies at DePaul University in Chicago. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Africa • Foreign policy • Human trafficking • Islam • Muslim • Nigeria • Opinion • Quran • Religious violence

soundoff (346 Responses)
  1. kenmargo

    The problem isn't his willy wonka, They have the same problem as we do in america. GUNS. It isn't allah or the quran. Get rid of the GUNS and you'll solve 90% of the violence (guestimate) in the world. I guess they have 2nd amendment rights in africa as well.

    May 6, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      It may not be very Christian of me, but if they can catch this guy they ought to break his arms and legs, circumcise him with a rusty machete and throw him in a ditch. Then all of the towns-women should menstruate on him and they should cover him in circumcised clitorises. Then after everyone in town pisses on him they should bury him alive with just a straw to breath through for a few days. Then they should dig him up and punish him.

      May 6, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
      • kenmargo

        This shouldn't be just about him. This is a culture problem. You could kill this guy and there would be a thousand guys to take his place. Until they respect themselves, this wil never change.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        Ken, it will never change, that is my opinion. The ignorance runs too deep. The best thing to do is remove these savages.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
      • kenmargo

        Trying to kill everyone will only bring resentment. This is something they have to do themselves. Just like the GUN problem we have here. Until WE do something about it. The carnage will continue.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        I agree re: the guns, but the people we are talking about will not ever change. They have nothing. They are uneducated. They have no self-respect. The have been brainwashed since birth. They must be killed and, I agree with you, it should be by the hand of those that they oppress. But that is not happening. I would like to see the U.S. go in and take out this group and save those girls.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:21 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        I agree re: the guns, but the people we are talking about will not ever change. They have nothing. They are uneducated. They have no self-respect. The have been brainwashed since birth. They must be killed and, I agree with you, it should be by the hand of those that they oppress. But that is not happening. I would like to see the U.S. go in and take out this group and save those girls.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
  2. kenmargo

    Does Boko Haram sound like a name of a WWE wrestler?

    May 6, 2014 at 3:42 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Or a 60's rock band.

      May 6, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
  3. kenmargo

    Why don't The parents simply pray to allah to return the girls? Muslims love to pump up allah every chance they get. Just shows allah is just as "powerful" (or worthless) as the christian god. Christian god allows children to be shot in schools, Allah allows girls to be kidnapped and sold as slaves. What a pair!

    May 6, 2014 at 3:39 pm |
    • otoh2

      There were both Christian & Muslim girls who were kidnapped. It seems that neither one of those gods is worth a hoot.

      May 6, 2014 at 3:52 pm |
      • kenmargo

        This is wonderful opportunity for allah and god to come together and show how it's done. But since both are a fantasy, we dream on.

        May 6, 2014 at 3:55 pm |
  4. bostontola

    This is the problem with every sacred text, it contains both love and violence, and it is interpreted differently by each individual. Each person cherry picks what they want. Warriors pick their favorites and interpret the words, peace lovers pick their favorites and interpret the words. That's why we have 42,000 denominations of Christianity, and many sects of Islam, Judaism, etc. These sacred texts have been so over digested, they've become almost useless.

    May 6, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
    • transframer

      There is no violence in NT

      May 6, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
      • bostontola

        I'm sure you will have a peaceful interpretation of the following. That doesn't matter, a warrior will make a violent interpretation. That was the whole point.

        Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace but a sword.Matthew 10:34
        I came to bring fire to the earth and how I wish it were already kindled! Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division.Luke 12:49-51

        And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing. Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one. For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end. And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.Luke 22:35-38

        May 6, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
        • myachinhead

          Dear Bostonola:

          The verses of Matthew's 'violence' you quote are Christ's teachings on how His difficult teachings will affect members of the same family, that is a mother against her daughter and so forth. Any sound online Bible commentary will confirm this – I suggest you visit one.

          Further – the verse you quote in Luke of Christ admonishing his followers to obtain a sword – in case you missed it – is tied to the words just before 'sword' – that is 'garment' and 'purse' – ordinary traveling possessions (as is 'sword') required in the early church days for travel and spreading the Gospel. Otherwise – why would Christ have upbraided Peter in John 18:10 for using his sword against the arresting Romans? No – Jesus' teachings on violence are clear.

          'He who lives by the sword shall die by it".


          May 6, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
        • transframer

          Yes I have but you can find yourself on Internet, there are countless places which explain the few instances in NT which can be interpreted as not too peacefully. To a so called warrior it doesn't matter what the book actually says, it's just a pretext but for the rest of the word it counts to know that is just that, a pretext with no relationship to the religion. That is when talking about NT as a source of violence. However that's not the case for Islam where these teaching are live and part of the main doctrine

          May 6, 2014 at 4:25 pm |
        • bostontola

          That is the point. This author castigates the war lord for distorting the Quran. The war lord does the same back. The bibles are the same, spawning Crusades, Inquisitions, witch trials, etc.

          May 6, 2014 at 4:51 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        Jesus made a whip and chased people around the Temple grounds...that was a violent act.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:12 pm |
        • myachinhead


          Resulting in harm to no one – of course.

          It was by the way a fulfillment of prophecy (Zeal for my Father's house will consume Me) – when Christ drove out those duplicitous money-changers who were trafficking in exploitation of the poor and those seeking to worship at the temple. If he did the same with the money-changers on Wall Street – would you be deriding this act of 'violence'?


          May 6, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • G to the T


          I disagree with your interpretation of that event. How else were Jews supposed to get the animals they needed for sacrifice after traveling to the temple? They certainly couldn't pay for sacrifices to God with coinage that bared the image of a man that claimed to be a god could they? Do you contend that Jesus attacked them because they were giving unfair exchange rates?

          May 6, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
    • cwconlin35

      It is worse than that – the verses he cites are completely out of context and he obscures their true nature. Sura 2:191 which is cited in the article ACTUALLY SAYS it is prefered to kill than to oppress and Sura 24:33 is in the context of slave girls (not just girls as the author would have you believe)...do not believe me – do what he expects you not to – look it up and read the context of the full verses for yourself

      May 13, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
      • believerfred

        All that knowledge yet you still do not know why you exist.

        May 13, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          We exist because there is life on earth that has evolved. No purpose has been proven.

          May 13, 2014 at 3:22 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          What? Since the beginning of recorded history we see worship as a consistent pattern. Science would call it the law of worship. Put a group of people in a box with only blank walls long enough and they will develop knowledge about what is outside the box.

          May 13, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Do you want me to believe that you see zip outside the blank walls? Tell me what do you see.

          May 13, 2014 at 3:37 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          What I imagine might be outside the walls do not make it real. There is no evidence for any god.

          May 13, 2014 at 4:00 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          What you see is very important. It is why you exist. What do you see outside the blank walls?

          May 13, 2014 at 4:25 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred, No purpose has been shown to exist. I don't see your metaphorical walls and I don't imagine what is beyond them. I don't need a supernatural explanation especially when they are replete with contradictions and inaccuracies.

          May 13, 2014 at 4:42 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Neanderthal did not have all the wealth of science yet they buried unique artifacts with their dead. We all are surrounded by 6 blank walls. Is there nothing outside those walls? It's just you inside the unknown. I personally must understand what it is. What is outside of Santa We Trust?

          May 13, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred, The fact that Neanderthals were superstitious does not mean that I have to be. The wealth of science, that you refer to, tells me that the imaginings of primitive people should be consigned to history – a relic of a less-informed era.

          May 13, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Actually, you know nothing more about what is outside the blank walls than did Neanderthal. At best you are aware that the scope of the unknown is far more vast then they ever imagined.
          What is outside the box has greater probability of knowing why you are in a box. You have no evidence as to what is outside the box yet you believe you have no purpose within the box. Logic fault.

          May 13, 2014 at 5:31 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Your circular logic is the logic fault. You presume a creator then use that creator to infer purpose. You have no evidence of a creator and none of a purpose.

          May 13, 2014 at 7:04 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          You cannot assume the opposite because that is impossible. There cannot be nothing outside the 6 walls otherwise there could be no walls. The fact you recognize there is something that exists without evidence establishes that you really do not require evidence for you belief. You just imposed an artificial demand for evidence in the case of God because you presuppose there is no God. I am open and ask why do I exist, I do not ask why don't I exist.
          You further cannot say there is no reason for existence since you exist.

          May 13, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
      • believerfred

        One would think that before a journey is made that one knows where they are going. If the purpose of existence is unknown you can go just about any direction and end up where you planned.

        May 13, 2014 at 3:21 pm |
  5. Blessed are the Cheesemakers

    This is where religious "objective" morality gets you. It can mean whatever the believer wants it to mean...

    May 6, 2014 at 3:22 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      It is also what happens when, in 2014, there are still cave men running around dragging young girls by the hair, raping them and abusing them. Uneducated, dirty disgusting allah loving scum bags.

      May 6, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
      • tallulah131

        Don't forget about certain radical branches of the mormon church. Dirty old American men and the women who enable them are just as guilty.

        May 6, 2014 at 8:27 pm |
  6. Concert in an Egg

    Some people are worth killing on the spot and these goons need their heads lobbed off with little ceremony.

    May 6, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
  7. myachinhead

    YAWN !

    I lived in Saudi Arabia for twenty years – and I can tell you that it is routine for Islamic apologists to quote those Quranic verses which clearly encourage slavery and jihad to their own populations – while quoting ONLY those verses which seem to promote peace and piety to the outside world.

    Mr Ifitkhar is no exception – and CNN should do a better job of choosing whom they quote.

    Consider Saudi Sheik Al-Fawzan of the Senior Council of Clerics, Saudi Arabia’s highest religious body, who is a member of the Council of Religious Edicts and Research, the Imam of Prince Mitaeb Mosque in Riyadh, and a professor at Imam Mohamed Bin Saud Islamic University, the main Wahhabi center of learning in the country.

    This man serves at the pleasure of the King of Saudi Arabia – and he says this about slavery:

    "Slavery is a part of Islam, slavery is part of jihad, and jihad will remain as long there is Islam.” Of those who disagree he says “They are ignorant, not scholars, they are merely writers. Whoever says such things is an infidel.”

    Visit http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/1018026/posts for his full remarks.

    It is long overdue for the whole – entire – unvarnished truth about Quranic teachings on jihad and slavery to be discussed in the full light of day – instead of these misleading and self-serving viewpoints being trafficked by apologists like Mr. Iftikhar.


    May 6, 2014 at 3:12 pm |
    • wjshelton

      Sheik Al-Fawzan does not speak for all Muslims by any stretch of the imagination and the Free Republic is hardly an objective source for anything.

      May 6, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
      • myachinhead


        You might wish to consider:

        1: The statement by Saudi ambassador to the U.S. (Ali Jubeir) that his country serves as 'the Vatican for Muslims'. Quotation is available online.

        2: That the Saudi brand of Islam is adoringly looked up to throughout the Muslim world as the gold standard of Quranic interpretation and implementation of Islamic law.

        3: That Al Fawzan's comments are a matter of public record – and have been reported widely by a plethora of other sources besides Freerepublic which you can easily choose from which may meet your criteria for neutrality.


        May 6, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
        • wjshelton

          1. The Saudi ambassador is grandstanding. There is no "Muslim Vatican".

          2. Wahabism is far from the gold standard. It is widely criticized in many circles within the Muslim World.

          3. That you should choose to cite the Free Republic indicates that you share their biases.

          4. I am Muslim. I do believe I have a certain level of knowledge about my religion. You are simply wrong.

          May 6, 2014 at 4:38 pm |
  8. colin31714

    Hey Boko Haram, pick up a Quran and bring back our girls, so that we can

    (i) Circu.mcise them and prevent them from ever experiencing se.xual pleasure as women, because we are a mob of backward sava.ges;

    (ii) veil them and prevent them from ever being able to express their feminine beauty because we are insecure that another man may take them from us;

    (iii) keep them in a state of complete domestic servitude within the house;

    (iv) dissuade them from achieving an education as it will upset our dominance over them;

    (v) subject them to domestic abuse, both physical and mental, should they ever challenge our male dominance at home;

    (vi) place them in arranged marriages at very young ages with men they will never love;

    (vii) prohibit them from socializing or, Allah forbid, marrying, outside of their religion;

    (viii) subject them to the death penalty, should they have se.x before marriage, commit adultery within marriage or blaspheme or commit apostasy; and

    (ix) generally make their lives miserable, reducing them to nothing but mindless breeding machines, from the day they are born until the day they die, for our own sick, barbaric pleasure.

    May 6, 2014 at 3:06 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      For every clitoris they cut off, they should make one of the males where it on his nose in shame. The clitoris noses will be easy to identify and avoid.

      May 6, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
    • wjshelton

      I see you're a fan of Warren Jeffs...

      May 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm |
      • colin31714

        The way many women are treated in Islam is akin to how Jeffs treated his "followers." The difference is, we put Jeffs in prison. Islamic states support and condone such treatment.

        May 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
    • His Panic

      I am not familiar with Islam neither have any interest in it at all. Based on what I have seen reported over the years by many Media I think you are right on target.

      May 6, 2014 at 8:49 pm |
  9. otoh2

    “Is Allah willing to prevent evil, but not able?
    Then he is not omnipotent.
    Is he able, but not willing?
    Then he is malevolent.
    Is he both able and willing?
    Then whence cometh evil?
    Is he neither able nor willing?
    Then why call him Allah?”

    May 6, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
    • kenmargo

      Because if they called allah a P.O.S. it would result in a hair cut that starts in the front of your neck and end at the back!

      May 6, 2014 at 3:52 pm |
  10. His Panic

    OK people, willful ignorance of what the Bible says on the subject prevails in the Blog.

    This can lead to anxiety, hysteria and even Panic. Panic in turn can lead to stampedes, rebellions and revolutions. That's because the world DOES NOT Trust God and Jesus Christ God's Only Son.

    Now, these are the Biblical Laws and the instances/occasions/reasons that caused the death penalty in Israel. Keep in mind that some of these applied ONLY in Israel. Some, like in the case of Murder were in place long before these Laws were given to Israel in Mt. Sinai. A few are/were also in place in other cultures & Civilizations past & present while some are unique to the Bible.

    Kidnapping and Ra.pe were caused for the death penalty in the Law of God.

    Adultery: Lev. 20:10; Deut. 22:24
    As.sault, intrusion invasion of a home at night not during day time: Exo. 22:2
    Best.iality: Exo. 22:19; Lev. 20:15-16
    Blasphemy: Lev. 24:11-14,16,23
    Cursing father or mother: Exo. 21:15,17; Lev. 20:9
    Desecration of the Sabbath: Exo. 32:2; Num. 15:32-36
    Disobedience to parents: Deut. 21:18-21
    Divination & Witchcraft: Exo. 22:18
    Fornication: Num. 25:8, Deut. 22:21-24
    Human sacrifice: Lev. 20:2-5
    Idolatry: Exo. 22:20; Deut. 8:19-20
    Incest: Lev. 20:11-12, 14
    Kidnapping: Exo. 21:21:16; Deut. 24:7
    Murder & Homicide: Gen. 9:5-6; Num. 35:16-21, 30-33; Deut. 17:6
    Negligence in case of someone death: Exo. 21:29
    Perjury: Exo. 23:7; Deut. 19:18
    Prophesying falsely: Deut. 13:1-10
    Propagate & teach of False doctrines: Deut. 13:1-10
    Prosti.tution by the daughter of a Priest: Lev. 21:9
    Ra.pe of a Virgin girl/woman: Deut. 22:25
    Refusal of a Court Order: Deut. 17:12
    Sacrifice to an Idol: Exo. 22:20
    Sod.omy: Lev. 18:22; 20:13
    Treason: 1st. Kings 2:25; Est. 2:23

    May 6, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
    • His Panic

      PHONY Filter!

      May 6, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      Where was god when these terrified children were kidnapped and ripped away from their families? Will god be watching and enjoying it as the babies are raped and abused by the bad guys? Why doesn't god make his presence known and rain justice down on the evil doers?

      May 6, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
      • His Panic

        Sometimes when in doubts I have asked those questions myself. God however has established a day in which He will bring ALL to Justice including You. That is why there is a place called Hell, but then again you will also complaint about such a place, because you see yourself as better than them. You will still accuse God of sending some people to hell.

        May 6, 2014 at 2:48 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          I will accuse god of no such thing. I certainly won't accuse him of sending anyone to hell. You are mistaken.

          May 6, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          You failed to answer Concert's question. Where was your god when these innocent girls were taken? If your god is so loving and real and powerful, why the hell would it not protect these children? These children have done nothing to deserve the fate delivered to them.

          May 6, 2014 at 3:24 pm |
        • His Panic

          Is truthprevails1 acting on behalf or concertegg or what?

          May 6, 2014 at 8:42 pm |
        • His Panic

          God was where HE always is and where HE has and will ALWAYS be IN HEAVEN And you are not better than them who kidnapped those girls.

          May 6, 2014 at 8:44 pm |
        • hawaiiguest


          I don't think it's possible for eternal punishment to be justified by actions taken in a finite amount of time.

          May 6, 2014 at 8:46 pm |
        • hawaiiguest


          I can and will say that I am absolutely better than people who kidnap others.

          May 6, 2014 at 8:49 pm |
        • His Panic

          @ hawaian,

          Then neither would be possible to Eternally reward those who believe and Trust in God and in Jesus Christ God's Only Son based on a Faith and Trust lived in that very same finite amount of time. But we are Justified among other things by that Faith. Only in your eyes are you better than them.

          May 6, 2014 at 8:55 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          What a convoluted way of saying that your god values blind belief over actual actions. That's one pathetically vain god you have there.

          May 6, 2014 at 9:00 pm |
        • cwconlin35

          "...Where was your god when these innocent girls were taken? If your god is so loving and real and powerful, why the hell would it not protect these children?..." Probably right there next to them. Relief from pain and suffering from the hands of evil people is never promised in the life according to the Bible. In fact just the opposite is promised. Pain and suffering WILL COME CHRISTIANS (and non-christian alike). At least 90% of these girls were Christian (a fact most of the media are not reporting on) and no where are they promised they would never be harmed for their belief in Christ in this life. The question that you and many from your perspective never seem to ask is why would Jesus allow Himself to suffer as well at the hands of evil people? If He did not exempt Himself from the evil you talk about why would anyone else expect any differently in this present life? You question presumes there is no greater purposes possible through the acts of evil people. is it difficult to understand or even accept – ya of course...but then you and I are not an all knowing God who would have knowledge to all possible outcomes are we.

          May 13, 2014 at 3:52 pm |
        • believerfred

          "...Where was your god when these innocent girls were taken? If your god is so loving and real and powerful, why the hell would it not protect these children?..."
          =>This is thought from one who has never experienced such darkness. The protection was not in the present moment as one who is taken from the jaws of the abyss but from the eternal abyss which if it in any way resembles the fear that feels never ending as the seconds tick during abusive dominance of evil is what you will find in Psalm 23. He is by my side takes on a whole new meaning.

          "Probably right there next to them."
          =>That is the blessing. Jesus experienced for the first time when he said "why hast thou forsaken me" what it is to without God.

          May 13, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
    • myachinhead

      Dear Sir / Maam:

      Your claim that the Law Of Moses – which you quote from the Old Testament Bible – still applies for these offenses today for the Christian world is incorrect. The entire thrust of the New Testament is that the Law of Moses is completed and no longer in force through the coming of Christ and his inwardly transforming Holy Spirit. This is well established through Christ's teachings and Paul's exhaustive treatment of the topic in his letter to the Romans.

      Such views as yours – and I say this respectfully – typically attempt to paint the temporary and closed-ended violence commanded by God in the Old Testament against those peoples standing in the way of the ancient Hebrews in their journey to possess the promised land – with that of the open-ended violence in the Quran which says that the 'end times will not come until the Muslims slay the Jews'.

      While you do not equate the Bible to the Quran explicitly – your post seems to do so implicitly.

      There is an enormous difference between the seemingly barbaric edicts in the Old Testament against the Edomites, Jebusites et al (none of whom exist today as a people by the way) and the rather obvious open ended and permanent edicts for violence towards those who refuse to accept Islam as required by the Quran.

      Just as no sane Christian today practices animal sacrifice as specified in the Old Testament – for that and similar edicts are now null and void with the coming of the New Contract of the New Testament – no sane Christian today employs the Levitical edicts you quote for the crimes you list.


      May 6, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
      • His Panic

        dear sir/madam,

        I did not say those Laws apply today that is very untrue. I said very clearly they were in Israel. That is in the Israel of the Old Testament. There is no such thing as a "Christian world" that is a big Lie, the world IS NOT Cristian. What is Christian is the church which is called the body of Christ. However some of the Laws related to Murder do apply today for all the nations.

        May 6, 2014 at 8:40 pm |
  11. otoh2

    Thank you for at least speaking out against these people Mr. Iftikhar. It does make it evident, however, that your religion is no more of a magical cure (or even treatment) for humanity's ills than any of the other supernatural fantasies.

    May 6, 2014 at 2:18 pm |
  12. Vic

    I wonder if that stems from the inequality of a female to a male by creed.

    May 6, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Ephesians 5:22

      May 6, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
    • Vic

      Exceptions to the rules due to cultural constraints, hence Apostle Paul's address to certain Jews and Gentiles, are not the rules.

      1 Corinthians 9:20,21
      "20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law; 21 to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, so that I might win those who are without law." (NASB)

      The "Rule" in Christianity regarding the matter:

      Galatians 3:28
      "28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (NASB)

      May 6, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
      • G to the T

        "To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law; 21 to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, so that I might win those who are without law."

        I'm sorry, but to me this just says "I was a hypocrite, but I was a hypocrite for God so it's justified".

        May 6, 2014 at 8:29 pm |
  13. Alias

    Blaming Islam for this was just a convenient BS justification.
    This clearly had nothing to do with any religion.
    Pointless, butthurt article from a shallow academic.

    May 6, 2014 at 1:28 pm |
    • flightfromfrostmtn

      Damage control.

      Slows down conversions in the west with this kind of garbage going on.

      May 6, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
  14. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    Q. What do terrorists do?
    A. Provoke an emotional response of fear and anger by committing acts of terrorism.

    And that is precisely what Boko Haram has done. I'd like to think there is a higher course of action here and Arsalan Iftikhar's plea in this article is a well articulated attempt at that.

    And the problem with exterminating terrorists (assuming you can find them) is that it turns them into martyrs for the cause, but I see no alternative but to sever the head of the snake here before he ratchets up the level of fear and anger he provokes when this action changes nothing.

    May 6, 2014 at 12:54 pm |
    • flightfromfrostmtn

      If Mr. Iftikhar is correct and the majority of Islam is as he claims, Boko Haram will be anything but martyrs to them.

      May 6, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      They won't be martyrs to most Muslims – just those inclined to be extremists in Nigeria.

      May 6, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
      • flightfromfrostmtn

        Perhaps the deep pocketed backers of Muslim expansion should take a break and clean house for a bit. Itd be very nice to see Islam step in front on dealing with these guys...after all it IS their name they are trashing – and itsd be good PR to boot.

        May 6, 2014 at 2:25 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        "Perhaps the deep pocketed backers of Muslim expansion"
        I'm sorry, what's that supposed to mean? Saudis?

        May 6, 2014 at 5:53 pm |
      • flightfromfrostmtn

        Saudi in a large source yes but not the only source – they are Sunni (Wahhabism is a move conservative branch- but is still Sunni )as are Qatar and the UAE. and Sunnis are the largest group in Africa.

        May 7, 2014 at 3:39 am |
        • flightfromfrostmtn

          *more* even.

          May 7, 2014 at 3:47 am |
  15. Concert in an Egg

    Question: I haven't seen any articles about what the outraged and heartbroken communities and families are doing to go and kill these men and save their children. I must have missed it?

    May 6, 2014 at 12:01 pm |
  16. Concert in an Egg

    I believe I have a reasonable solution to these atrocities. First, the U.S. needs to go in and kill each and every one of these evil men, except Boko Haram. For him, we should cut off his nose and replace it with a mutilated clitoris from a young girl these freaks have cut off. Then let him walk about with his clitoris nose for all to see and enjoy. P.S. He doesn't read the Quran because he most likely can't read.

    May 6, 2014 at 11:59 am |
    • i12bphil

      Broko Haram is the group. Sigh.

      May 6, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
  17. Concert in an Egg

    Where is your god now?

    May 6, 2014 at 11:51 am |
  18. Reality

    o Islam gives women almost no rights and treats them like fodder for the male species as so bluntly noted by Aya-an Hi-rsi Ali in her autobiography, In-fidel.

    "Thus begins the extraordinary story of a woman born into a family of desert nomads, circu-mcised as a child, educated by radical imams in Kenya and Saudi Arabia, taught to believe that if she uncovered her hair, terrible tragedies would ensue. It's a story that, with a few different twists, really could have led to a wretched life and a lonely death, as her grandmother warned. But instead, Hi-rsi Ali escaped – and transformed herself into an internationally renowned spokeswoman for the rights of Muslim women."

    ref: Washington Post book review.

    some excerpts:

    "Some of the Saudi women in our neighborhood were regularly be-aten by their husbands. You could hear them at night. Their scre-ams resounded across the courtyards. "No! Please! By Allah!"

    "The Pakistanis were Muslims but they too had cas-tes. The Untou-chable girls, both Indian and Pakistani were darker skin. The others would not play with them because they were unt-ouchable. We thought that was funny because of course they were tou-chable: we to-uched them see? but also hor-rifying to think of yourself as un-touchable, des-picable to the human race."

    "Between October 2004 and May 2005, eleven Muslim girls were ki-lled by their families in just two regions (there are 20 regions in Holland). After that, people stopped telling me I was exa-ggerating."

    "The kind on thinking I saw in Saudi Arabia and among the Brotherhood of Kenya and Som-alia, is incompatible with human rights and liberal values. It preserves the feu-dal mind-set based on tr-ibal concepts of honor and shame. It rests on self-deception, hypro-cricy, and double standards. It relies on the technologial advances of the West while pretending to ignore their origin in Western thinking. This mind-set makes the transition to modernity very painful for all who practice Islam".

    More on the treatment of females in Islam:

    Islam’s widespread practice of amputating the cli-to-ris and sometimes part or even all of the vul-va from the ge-n-ita-lia of Muslim women, affirmed in a had-ith by Mohammed himself, most likely also traces back to the founder’s deliberate abuse of se-x to lure pagan males into his cu-lt. The more the male s-ex drive is purposefully aro-used, the more the female s-ex urge may have to be proportionately suppressed, lest org-iastic he-ll begin to spread."

    So why are we shocked at the idiocy of Boko Haram ????

    May 6, 2014 at 11:41 am |
  19. Reality

    Hey Arsalan Iftikhar, have you read the Koran lately i.e. the passages that demand the death of all infidels by any means an the conquering of the world in the name of Islam by any means???

    o "Believers, take neither Jews nor Christians for your friends." (Surah 5:51)
    "Believers, when you encounter the infidels on the march, do not turn your backs to them in flight. If anyone on that day turns his back to them, except it be for tactical reasons...he shall incur the wrath of God and Hell shall be his home..." (Surah 8:12-)

    "Make war on them until idolatry shall cease and God's religion shall reign supreme." (Surah 8:36-)

    "...make war on the leaders of unbelief...Make war on them: God will chastise them at your hands and humble them. He will grant you victory over them..." (Surah 9:12-)

    "Fight against such as those to whom the Scriptures were given [Jews and Christians]...until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued." (Surah 9:29-)

    "It is He who has sent forth His apostle with guidance and the true Faith [Islam] to make it triumphant over all religions, however much the idolaters [non-Muslims] may dislike it." (Surah 9:31-)

    "If you do not fight, He will punish you sternly, and replace you by other men." (Surah 9:37-)

    "Prophet make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites and deal rigorously with them. Hell shall be their home." (Surah 9:73)

    "Believers, make war on the infidels who dwell around you. Deal firmly with them." (Surah 9:121-)

    "Say: 'Praise be to God who has never begotten a son; who has no partner in His Kingdom..." (Surah 17:111)

    "'How shall I bear a child,' she [Mary] answered, 'when I am a virgin...?' 'Such is the will of the Lord,' he replied. 'That is no difficult thing for Him...God forbid that He [God[ Himself should beget a son!...Those who say: 'The Lord of Mercy has begotten a son,' preach a monstrous falsehood..." (Surah 19:12-, 29-, 88)

    "Fight for the cause of God with the devotion due to Him...He has given you the name of Muslims..." (Surah 22:78-)

    "Blessed are the believers...who restrain their carnal desires (except with their wives and slave-girls, for these are lawful to them)...These are the heirs of Paradise..." (Surah 23:1-5-)

    "Muhammad is God's apostle. Those who follow him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another." (Surah 48:29)

    "Shall the reward of goodness be anything but good?...Dark-eyed virgins sheltered in their tents...They shall recline on green cushions and fine carpets...Blessed be the name of your Lord..." (Surah 55:52-66-)

    May 6, 2014 at 11:36 am |
    • transframer

      Quran (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"
      Quran (9:5) – "So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captive and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them."

      May 6, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
  20. Pedestrian Awareness Education Survey

    Reblogged this on 2014 Tulsa "Tramp Chic".

    May 6, 2014 at 11:03 am |
1 2 3 4 5
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.