RE: Letter to NPR re Duncan Moon's 9/18 piece on Islamic reaction to the 911 attacks

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Tue Sep 18 2001 - 10:49:28 MDT

Greg Burch wrote,
> Like the rest of the U.S. press corps, Mr. Moon has passed on without
> question the statements by moderate Muslims that "Islam does not endorse
> violence." We will not as a nation come to understand how and why the
> events of September 11 occurred until we take the time to study Islam and
> develop an understanding of how a large number of people in the world use
> religion to justify violence. The simple and undisputable fact is that
> there is clear and explicit language in the Koran that:
> <> endorses the use of violence against "unbelievers"
> <> requires that Islamic countries institute legal discrimination against
> non-Muslims
> <> demands unequal treatment of women

Greg, I am concerned about your attitude toward Islam. Are you aware that
the above statements are also true of Judaism and Christianity? If you read
the war-like ancient religious texts from the early Middle East, they all
say this. The commandments and teachings of both Judaism (and later
Christianity) and Islam stem from the early Semitic writings about the early
tribes warring among themselves. They all argue for isolationism, racism
and being victorious in battle over the enemy.

Everything you say about Islam is true to some degree. But in the same way
it is true about Judaism and Christianity, it is usually not interpreted
that way by its followers. Most Muslims interpret Islam as being about love
and peace, as Christians and Jews would claim about their religions.

Are you attacking all religions, or at least the big three, as being roots
of violence? Or are you claiming that some religions are more violent than
others? You seem to be singling out Islam, when I am not sure it is any
more violent than other religions.

Harvey Newstrom <> <>

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