Ramadan 2013 – Day 14 – Is Some of the Food We Eat Blessed by Allah?

2013 Ramadan PrayerA British cafeteria worker lost her job after an “unintentional error” of serving non-halal food to Muslim students at the Moseley School in Birmingham. Despite having children of multiple faiths at the school, all 1,400 students are served halal meat only regardless of their religion.

Last year a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in South Africa was forced to rehire a worker that was fired for bringing a non-halal meal, consisting of uphuthu and bean curry to work for his lunch. The group that owns several restaurants in the franchise around South Africa had a policy that restricted employees from bringing food to work because they follow Islamic laws.

McDonald’s Restaurant in Dearborn, Michigan has now stopped serving halal items after settling a $700,000 class action lawsuit that was brought against the company alleging the company had served a non-halal chicken sandwich to a Muslim customer. Halal chicken had been served to Muslim customers since 2005.

Many prisons, universities, restaurants, and American retailers such as Costco offer halal products. The website, Zabihah lists restaurant and grocery chains that have one or more outlets that serve halal food or products in several nations including the U.S., the U.K, Canada, France, Germany, New Zealand, and Australia.

Halal is an Arabic word meaning “lawful” or “permissible.” In Islam the term is used to designate items seen as permissible according to Islamic sharia law and covers not only food and drink but also all matters of daily life. The opposite of halal is “haram,” an Arabic word meaning “sinful” which refers to any act that is forbidden by Allah.

Food in Islam can be haram if it includes blood, alcohol, meat or any byproducts from a forbidden animal (pigs, birds of prey, carnivorous animals), and meat or any products of an animal that has not been slaughtered according to sharia law.

Halal Choices describes the ritualistic slaughter, “To be halal certified the animal must be facing Mecca, have its throat cut while still alive and then ritually sacrificed by a Muslim who recites a prayer dedicating the slaughter to Allah. Because the animals must be slaughtered alive, stun guns are often not an option as they can kill and animal before the heart pumps out all the blood.”

Halal certification is big business in western nations, and in order for a company’s food to be certified the companies must pay a fee to the Islamic certifying agency. Halal certification most often is related to meat products, however sometimes companies will have food certified as halal even if the designation is not necessary. For instance the Sydney Morning Herald reported in March that Cadbury chocolate Easter eggs had been certified as halal.

The article further revealed that western companies are being forced to pay for halal certification even if the product would already be considered halal. As an example, Capilano Honey when asked why their product was halal certified replied, “While we appreciate that honey is considered halal under Islamic law, it our customer’s requirement to provide halal certification in order for us to conduct business with them.”

Consumers in Australia can see a listing of halal certified products on a website called Halal Choices. In Australia, some of the international companies are listed are Heinz, Purina, Nestle, and Kelloggs. Similar listings are not available for other countries, however the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America, a certifying agency has a current list that consumers in the United States can search of products this particular agency has certified. The listings do not include halal products that may be certified by another Islamic group.

Prayer Points:

Serving halal products to schoolchildren who are not Islamic is a form of dhimmitude. It places the halal food in a superior position to western food, and in order to be certified as halal, it is also economically supporting the religion of Islam. Pray that parents of children of other faiths will insist their children have a choice of the food they are served.

Pray that western companies are not forced to certify their products as halal in order to do business in their own nations.

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ReCap March 2013

ReCap LogoWelcome to the March edition of Best Current News’ ReCap series – brief summaries of selected articles chosen to keep you informed of threats to traditional Judeo-Christian values and western culture by Islamists. In each synopsis there are links provided to the original sources to provide you with more information.

United States: Hafiz Khan, imam of the Flagler Mosque in Miami, Florida was convicted by a federal jury of providing more than $50,00 to the Pakistani Taliban. Sentencing will be May 30, 2013.

United States: Ahmed Ferhani was sentenced to 10 years in prison for plotting to blow up synagogues in Manhattan. Ferhani said, “By targeting a synagogue…I intended to create chaos and send a message of intimidation and coercion to the Jewish population of New York City, warning them to stop mistreating Muslims.”

United States: A report released by Sanctuary for Families discloses the risk for a female in the United States to undergo female genital mutilation, the partial or total removal of the female external genitalia, increased by 35%. The U.S. has had a law against FGM since 1996, but as of 2012 there have been no prosecutions under federal law and only one criminal case brought forward through state law.

United States: The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) president, Mohamed Magid joined 10 other leaders in a conversation with President Obama about immigration reform. Magid also took part in a meeting with the President to give “recommendations” in preparation for President Obama’s Middle East trip. ISNA remains an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism financing trial in U.S. history that was held in Dallas, Texas in 2008.

United States – Syria: Pending Congressional approval, John Kerry committed the U.S. to sending nonlethal aid to the Free Syrian Army, the armed faction that is battling to remove President Bashar al-Assad. The U.S. also pledged $60 million to help the anti-Assad group improve services to Syrians such as sanitation and education in areas it has already taken from the government. The $60 million is in addition to more then $50 million that has already been sent. Britain is also planning to send more nonlethal aid, and is consulting with other European nations regarding the type of aid they could send.

United States – Egypt:  U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced the release of $250 million in American aid to support Egypt’s “future as a democracy” after meeting with, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi. This is part of more than $1 billion in U.S. assistance promised by President Barack Obama to Egypt last year.

United States – Palestine: The U.S. has unblocked almost $500 million in aid to the Palestinian Authority, which had been frozen by Congress for months after President Mahmud Abbas won upgraded UN observer status at the UN General Assembly in November.

United States – Jordan: President Obama pledged an additional $200 million to deal with the growing number of Syrian refugees in Jordan pending Congressional approval. The U.S. is already the largest single donor of assistance to Syrian refugees.

Europe: Muslim gang rapes across Europe are under reported in the press due to political correctness. One report indicated that as many as 5,000 gang rapes occur in France alone each year. One particular gruesome case involved a 29-year-old Swedish mother of two who was raped by 12 Afghan refugees. The rape marathon lasted for seven hours during which the woman went into shock. She now lives in a psychiatric clinic and is wheelchair bound due to damage to her abdomen and suffers from fecal incontinence.

Belgium:  Politicians submitted a proposal in front of the Belgian Parliament to impeach or limit the influence of Muslim extremists in power, arguing that ultra-conservative Muslim beliefs are inconsistent with the European Convention on Human Right’s laws. According to recent estimates six percent of the Belgium population is Muslim.

France: A trial began for Bouchra Bagour, a French Muslim mother for “glorifying crime.” She was charged after sending her three-year-old son, named Jihad to nursery school wearing a shirt with the words “I am a bomb” on the front and “Jihad, born on 11 September” on the back.

Germany:  Three ultra-conservative Salafist Muslim groups were banned in Germany. Salafists are a militant group of Muslims who believe themselves the only correct interpreters of the Qur’an and consider moderate Muslims to be infidels. The banned groups wanted to overturn the German democracy and install a system based on sharia or Islamic law.

United Kingdom: The UK government is considering reviving plans to sell Islamic bonds to boost Britain’s role as a center for Sharia compliant financing. Zakat (which oftentimes funds terrorism) is required in order for a financial instrument to be considered sharia compliant.

Australia: Four men were found guilty of assault in an Australian court after they whipped a Muslim convert with an electric cord as punishment under sharia (Islamic) law.  His religious mentor and three other Islamic men punished the convert for drinking alcohol and taking drugs.

Australia: Cadbury Easter eggs are certified as halal (or permissible according to Islamic law) despite the fact Muslims do not celebrate Easter. A website called Halal Choices lists 340 companies in Australia that pay for halal certification of their products including Coles, Woolworths, Aldi, Franklins, Kellogg’s, MasterFoods, Nestle and Kraft’s Vegemite. Many companies pay for halal certification for products that do not require certification because in some cases their customers require the certification.

Malaysia: 27 people were killed after two deadly shootouts in Sabah on Borneo Island after an estimated 100 to 300 Islamic Filipino intruders claimed the state on behalf of the heir to a former Philippine sultanate. Follower of Islamic leader Jamalul Kiram III claim they are ready to die to defend his the Sultan’s claim to Sabah which was once controlled by the now-defunct sultanate.

Bangladesh: Jamaat-e-Islami supporters in Bangladesh are calling for a reunification with Pakistan and the creation of a “pure” state, free of non-Muslims. The Bangladesh Nationalist Party is supporting the group, and calling for the current government to resign.  Jamaat has begun handing out weapons to women and children to “save Islam and its soul from danger.” They are calling for Hindus, atheists and Christians to be expelled from the nation. Within the first week of March, 87 people have died – mostly police and peaceful protesters.

Nigeria: Boko Haram, a militant Islamic group allegedly destroyed 50 out of 52 Catholic churches in Borno state in Nigeria. Since its founding in 2001, the group has been responsible for between 3,000 and 10,000 deaths.