Arab Support for Hamas in the Israeli-Hamas Conflict Waning

2014 Ramadan Prayer Day 20The current conflict between the nation of Israel and the terrorist group, Hamas in the Gaza Strip has sparked criticism of Hamas in Arab media. The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) reports, “Arab media voiced sharp and extensive criticism of the Hamas leadership’s handling of the crisis. …Media in Saudi Arabia and in Al-Sisi’s Egypt…accused Hamas of taking unreasonable and irresponsible steps, of trading in the blood of the people of Gaza, and of exposing them to inevitable attacks.”

Following a call by Hamas’ political bureau head for the Egyptian army to aid Hamas in Gaza, many Egyptian columnists responded with anger. One questioned why the bureau head was not joining the fight himself and urged him to “Leave Doha’s [Qatar] hotels, which you have enjoyed, and go down into the trenches and fight…we are tired of defending the [Palestinian] cause that you have sold for cheap to a Muslim Brotherhood gang.”

Another columnist, Dr. Nagla Al-Sayyid criticized Hamas saying that it was trading in the blood of Palestinians while using the financial aid it receives to promote political and ideological interests rather than giving the money to those in need. “All the Hamas leaders are doing – as they sit securely in their hiding places while leaving the people of Gaza alone under the fire of the Israeli shelling – is collecting donations in order to use them in the service of their ideas.” Dr. Al-Sayyid continues by calling Hamas a failed movement.

Mahmoud Sultan, a pro-Muslim Brotherhood editor of a daily Egyptian newspaper criticized Hamas for not caring for their own people. Another Egyptian writer compared Hamas to Hitler saying that Hamas has done more damage to the Palestinian people than Israel has.Newspaper Rack at Souk

The Saudi Arabian editor of a London-based Saudi daily also claimed that Hamas was trading in the blood of its own people. “Nobody [in Hamas] is asking if the loss of [Palestinian] life if justified.” Another Saudi warned his readers to not be fooled by Hamas’ tactics. “The same sights are repeating themselves in Gaza once again: an abduction followed by mutual rocket fire, which triggers an Israeli invasion of Gaza. The result is always dozens of dead and hundreds wounded from among the weak Palestinians, and minimal damage on the Israeli side… While the poor, defenseless people …stand exposed to rockets and tanks, the jihadi and Brotherhood leaderships flee to the fortified holes they prepared for themselves.” He also points out that much of the leadership of Hamas are living outside of Gaza and tells his readers to “Beware of them!”

Hamas describes itself as one of the wings of the Muslim Brotherhood. The toppling of the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt seems to have helped open the eyes of Muslims in the region to the tactics of Hamas in Gaza.

Prayer Points:

Each of these journalists still would like to see a separate Palestinian state, and they still support Palestine over Israel. However, we thank God that eyes are beginning to be open to the tactics of Hamas and these journalists have been courageous to speak out against them.

In Isaiah 56:6-7 and 62:6-7 God spoke prophetically through Isaiah that He would raise up intercessors for Israel – and we see this today in the nations of the world. Continue to pray that Christians will see the current situation through the Lord’s eyes and have the understanding to make His proclamations and declarations that will cause a shift in what is happening in this critical time, releasing the will and glory of God and bringing peace in the midst of it.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently stated:

“Israel targets Hamas terrorists and not innocent civilians. By contrast, Hamas targets Israeli civilians while hiding behind Palestinian civilians. Hamas, therefore, bears full responsibility for any harm that comes to Israeli and Palestinian civilians alike. We are determined to give our citizens the safety and security they deserve.”

Pray that God will protect the innocent people in Gaza and that the nations in the world will recognize when Hamas is using their people as “human shields”.  Just as these Arab journalists are courageous, pray for the media in the nations to also be courageous, recognize what is happening through the eyes of truth – and report about Israel and Hamas with honesty and accuracy.

Ramadan 2013 – Day 22 – The Root of Modern Sunni Islamic Terrorism

2013 Ramadan PrayerModern Sunni Islamic terrorism can be traced back to the ideas and theories of two primary Islamist leaders, Hasan al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood and Sayyid Qutb commonly referred to as “the father of modern [Islamic] fundamentalism”.

The Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928, is one of the most influential Islamist organizations in the modern world. The Brotherhood has provided the ideological background for almost all modern Sunni Islamic terrorist groups including Hamas, al Qaeda and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

The Investigative Project on Terrorism says the Muslim Brotherhood has “grown exponentially, from only 800 members in 1936, to over 2 million in 1948, to its current position as a pervasive international Sunni Islamist movement, with covert and overt branches in over 70 countries.”

The Brotherhood’s goal is to first restore the historical Islamic Caliphate and then expand the Caliphate’s authority to the entire world through both violent and non-violent means. Founder Hassan Al-Banna said, “It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, to impose its law on all nations and to extend its power to the entire planet.” This ideology is reflected in the creed of the Muslim Brotherhood, “God is our purpose, the Prophet our leader, the Qur’an our constitution, jihad our way and dying for Allah our supreme objective.” Al-Banna was shot by an assassin in 1949.

In addition to Hasan al-Banna, the works of Sayyid Qutb impacted the philosophy of the Muslim Brotherhood. Today Qutb may actually be more influential than al-Banna among Islamic radicals. His books can easily be found in bookstores in the West. Qutb’s book, Milestones has influenced Islamic extremists such as al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, current leader of al-Qaeda.

The premise of Milestones was that the world had degraded into a state of ignorance like the world prior to Muhammad’s existence. Qutb believed apostate rulers and the establishment of Islamic states through jihad was the only way to solve this state of ignorance. According to Qutb, since Arab secular leaders such as Egyptian President Nasser did not follow the sharia, he felt the Egyptian government should be resisted. After a Muslim Brotherhood member attempted to assassinate President Nasser in 1954, the organization was outlawed and dissolved by Nasser. He burned down its headquarters and arrested approximately 15,000 of its members and executed some of them, including Qutb.

The ideology behind the Muslim Brotherhood continues to drive the organization. Whether through overt or covert means – the infiltration into western governments, universities and political organizations continues to put freedom and safety at risk around the world.

Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader said, “What remains is to conquer Rome. This means Islam will come back to Europe for the third time, after it was expelled from it twice…Conquest through Da’wa [proselytizing], that is what we hope for. We will conquer Europe, we will conquer America! Not through sword but through Da’wa.”

Prayer Points:

Most Muslims desire to live in peace. Pray they will overcome their fears and rise up against organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, al Qaeda, Hamas and others that are militant.

The Muslim Brotherhood members in western nations present themselves as peace loving and just another group – and yet their website and documents that have been exposed present a different picture. Ask God to expose the truth in our nations about the Muslim Brotherhood and cause leaders to understand their intent.

Pray that Christians will not fear Islam or Islamic terrorism. Pray they will boldly expose the evil in the system, while proclaiming the message of the gospel of the Kingdom of God to those caught in its grip.

Ramadan 2013 – Day 21 – Alms for Allah’s Armies

2013 Ramadan PrayerZakat (almsgiving) is one of the five pillars of Islam and therefore required for all Muslims. Zakat is the systematic giving of 2.5% of one’s wealth each year to benefit the poor.

Zakat is based off the “wealth” of a Muslim, not income. For instance the Zakat calculator for the Zakat Foundation of America helps to calculate the amount a Muslim should give by requesting their cash on hand in bank accounts, money loaned to others, expected tax refunds, the value of gold, silver and other precious items, stocks, bonds, IRA’s, and business assets.

Muslims believe that neglecting to give zakat can result in damnation, and is a sign of hypocrisy. Charity in Islam is different than in the western world. In Christianity charity means to give to someone in need. In Islam, it can go to the poor, but it also can go to fund jihad.

The Qur’an, Sura 9:60, gives eight categories for the distribution of zakat. These categories include the poor, those short of money, zakat workers, those who hearts are to be reconciled, slaves purchasing their freedom, those in debt, those fighting for Allah and travelers needing money.  Those fighting for Allah are to be given enough “to suffice them for the operation, even if affluent.” Islamic law scholars also indicate that zakat should also be given to support the families during the time the fighter is away.

In June, Sheikh Abdel Moneim Mohammed, imam of the al-Nour mosque in Cairo said in one of his sermons, “With the recent events in the region, in Syria in particular, some associations are using zakat as a cover to raise funds for fighters. Some associations and small mosques even called for ‘money jihad’ or ‘jihad al-zakat’ to send money to those fighters.”

The Ahsania Mission Zakat Fund, lists these eight categories on their website.  This particular fund collects zakat money on four continents and lists contacts and addresses for donations in the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

A Canada Revenue Agency audit revealed an Islamic charity, Mississauga’s Islamic Society of North America, gave more than $280,000 to a Pakistan-based agency that the government fears supported the Hizbul Mujahideen, a militant group that wants to see Kashmir secede from India.

The terrorist organization, Hamas, published an article on their website in May called “Jihad with Money” calling on its readers to give zakat generously. The article claims the term “Jihad with Money” has two different meanings. One is to give money for charitable causes, but the second speaks of a special meaning, “to make money for combat.” The money for combat included weapons, gear, clothing, weapon factories and support for the families of terror fighters.

Prayer Points:

Ask God to expose to Muslims the fact that some of the funding they expect is going to help the poor is actually (according to their leaders) assisting to fund Jihad.

Pray that Jihadi forces will not fight against western armies where funding has come from zakat.

Pray that western governments will prohibit Islamic charities based in western nations from distributing zakat funds for Jihad.

ReCap April 2013

ReCap LogoWelcome to the April 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. Simply click on the underlined portion of each entry in order to access the source information.

United States:  The U.S Army officially declined to award Purple Heart medals to the victims the shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas that occurred in November of 2009. The medal is presented to members of the military who are “wounded or killed in any action against an enemy of the United States.” The Army said awarding the medal would “set the stage for a formal declaration that Major Hasan is a terrorist.” Thus far the U.S. government has classified the attack at Fort Hood as “workplace violence” rather than a terrorist attack.

United States: The Associated Press, reacting to pressure from the Council on American Islamic Relations  (CAIR) revised the term “Islamist” in their stylebook after CAIR complained the term had a negative connotation. The AP now instructs their stylebook subscribers that the term should not be used as “a synonym for Islamic fighters, militants, extremists or radicals.”

United States: The Arab American News reports the Dearborn (Michigan) public schools accommodate Muslim student led prayer in all the schools in the district. The Council for American-Islamic Relations is also meeting with other school districts to obtain similar accommodations.

United States: Fox News reports a U.S. Army training instructor included Evangelical Christianity and Catholicism as examples of religious extremism along with organizations such as Al Qaeda, and Hamas during a training brief. Also listed, as a form of religious extremism was the term “Islamophobia.” An Army spokesman said the matter was closed after the instructor removed the slide from the presentation and apologized.

United States: A second defendant in the June 2011 plot to attack a military installation in Seattle, Washington was sentenced to 17 years in prison after pleading guilty. Walli Mujahidh planned to use grenades and machine guns to attack the Military Entrance Processing Center.

United States: In two separate cases – one in New York and the other in Ohio, Muslim workers are suing their employers for denying workplace accommodations for their religious practices. U.S. employers are increasingly forced to allow Muslim workers time during the work day for prescribed times of prayer and time off on Fridays for weekly Muslim services.

United States: Sharif El-Gamal, the developer of the controversial Park51 also known as the “Ground Zero” mosque property purchased a five-story adjacent building to the sight. With this purchase he now controls three properties within the city block.

United States: Three Americans were killed and 264 were injured when two pressure cooker bombs exploded at the Boston Marathon on April 15. Chechen brothers, Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev were identified as the bombers. After pictures were released of the suspects, they allegedly killed a MIT police officer, stole a car and initiated an exchange of gunfire with police injuring 16 police officers. Tamerlan was killed during the exchange. Dzhokhar escaped but was later apprehended by police. The brothers reportedly were motivated by extremist Islamist beliefs and learned how to make the bombs through consulting al Qaeda’s online magazine, Inspire.

United States: A Pennsylvania mother rescued her son who had been abducted by his father and was living in Egypt.  Kalliope (Kalli) Atteya traveled with her son and ex-husband, Mohamed to visit Mohamed’s aging mother in July of 2011. While there, her ex-husband abandoned Kalli on the side of the road and abducted their son. After numerous attempts to appeal to the Egyptian authorities for help, she sought the help of a private company. When the company failed to find her son, she hired a local guide who helped her find her son, and she personally rescued him, grabbing him as he stepped off a school bus in Alexandria, Egypt.  Atteya’s son is one of many American children abducted by a parent and taken to a foreign country. In 2011, there were more than 1,300 similar cases according to the U.S. State Department.

United States: The National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association developed a program called the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf which is a collection of 25 books, 4 DVDs and programming resources that have been given to 843 humanities councils, public, academic and community college libraries to use in presenting Islamic programs across the United States.

United States: The National Review reported there were at least 7,518 illegal aliens apprehended in 2011 from four nations that the U.S. government calls “state sponsors of terrorism” and ten additional “countries of interest.” The fourteen nations include Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Algeria, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Yemen, Nigeria, Iraq and Cuba.

Canada: Chiheb Eseghaier and Raed Jaser suspected Al Qaeda terrorists were arrested for plotting to derail a New York to Toronto passenger train. According to Superintendent Doug Best of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police this was the first known Al Qaeda planned attack in Canada. CBC News reported that Canada had tried to deport Raed Jaser in 2004.

Canada: A Toronto single father was banned from watching his nine-year-old daughter’s swim class because of “religious reasons.”  The class listed on the city’s website did not indicate that males could not observe the lessons held at a public pool.  After the blinds to the viewing area were closed to him, the staff informed the father the policy was because of Muslim women. Female only swim programs began 20 years ago based on “accommodating cultural and religious practices and requirements.” Currently nine Toronto pools have female only swim programs.

Afghanistan: As Operation Enduring Freedom continues in Afghanistan 17 coalition military fatalities were reported in the month of April. This brings the total fatalities since the operation began in 2001 to 3,291 with the majority of the coalition fatalities (2,207) being U.S. soldiers.

Austria:  The Turkish Muslim community claims they successfully forced Lego, a Danish toy manufacturer to withdraw its production of a Star Wars toy set, Jabba’s Palace.” The toy based is off the 1983 film Return of the Jedi. Jabba the Hutt is a hookah-smoking villain who lives in a domed building that Muslims claimed resembled Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia mosque. Initially Lego denied the request to stop production of the toy, but after a meeting between Muslim leaders and Lego executives the company announced it would end production from 2014 onwards. According to the company, “’Jabba’s Palace’ was planned from the beginning to be in the assortment only until the end of 2013.”

Britain: A Christian worker, fired from Heathrow airport after five Muslim colleagues complained she was anti-Islamic won the right to appeal her unfair dismissal case. Nohad Halawi says she lost her job after expressing her concerns about intimidation that she received from Muslim workers at the airport. She lost her tribunal case in 2011, because it was ruled her job was part time and commissioned-based freelance rather than a staff employee.

Britain:  BBC Panorama released a program called “Secrets of Britain’s Sharia Councils.” The 29-minute program takes a look at sharia councils across Britain and how the rulings of these councils can oftentimes be in opposition to British laws. Among some of surprising findings are that Muslim women are obtaining Islamic marriages rather than civil marriages in Britain that are not recognized under British law. This means when it comes to divorce the women are not entitled to rights that a married couple under British civil law would possess.  It also means a Muslim man can take more than one wife since he is not married under British law.

Australia:  Qantas Airlines will no longer serve pork or meals prepared with alcohol because it is forbidden in Islam on flights to and from Europe because of its partnership with Middle Eastern airline Emirates. Because of the partnership, flights from Australia to Europe fly via Dubai instead of Singapore. Several other airlines also observe the Islamic ban including Virgin Australia who serves halal accredited meals on its flights to and from Abu Dhabi Halal simply means permitted and indicates the meat served has been prepared according to Islamic law.

Egypt: Violence continued against Egypt’s Coptic Christians as gangs of Muslims attacked St. Mark Cathedral during a funeral service for six slain Christians – including one intentionally set on fire. Two additional Christians were killed and hundreds forced to hide in the back of the Cathedral until the violence subsided. Raymond Ibrahim of FrontPage Magazine described the significance of the attack: “…this jihadi attack on St Mark Cathedral is no different for Copts than a jihadi attack on the Vatican would be for Catholics. Or, to maintain the analogy, but from the other side, it would be no different than a ‘crusader’ attack on the Grand Mosque of Mecca for Muslims.”