FRANCE'S BURQA BAN IN CONTEXT
By Raymond Ibrahim
(Incidentally, it always bears asking — what if the shoe was on the other foot? Would the Muslim world, which has problems with something as inoffensive as churches being built, allow a distinctly Western custom on its soil — especially one that poses hazards?)
Moreover, according to former Islamists, a direct correlation exists between radical Islam and burqas — that is, wherever there is an increase of the former, there follows an increase of the latter, which is seen as a physical manifestation of radicalism.
However, where the Western infidel bans the burqa, such as in France, the Islamists' options become limited: stay and be forced into conforming (and essentially "liberalizing"); insist on the burqa, and, as a matter of priorities, return to accommodating Muslim countries. Or, of course, forego the burqa in compliance with secular laws, but continue to harbor Islamist beliefs in a state of taqiyya or taysir.
The burqa ban is ultimately a reminder that those religions that do not "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's and God what is God's" always will be at odds with secular societies. Indeed, when it comes to Sharia mandates that conflict directly with secularism, the burqa is but the tip of the iceberg.
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Raymond Ibrahim, a historian of Islam, Islamism and the Middle East, is the Associate Director of the Middle East Forum, a guest lecturer at the National Defense Intelligence College, and the editor of The Al-Qa'ida Reader, a collection of tranlations of key texts and documents of the Islamist movement. Ibrahim's translations of the religious texts and political propaganda comprising this collection help readers comprehend the origins, development, history, and serious danger of the Islamist war doctrines of Usama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Founders of Al-Qa'ida and implacable enemies of the U.S.A. and the West.
The foregoing article by Raymond Ibrahim was originally published in National Review Online, July 23, 2010, and can be found on the Internet website maintained by the Middle East Forum, a foreign policy think tank which seeks to define and promote American interests in the Middle East, defining U.S. interests to include fighting radical Islam, working for Palestinian Arab acceptance of the State of Israel, improving the management of U.S. efforts to promote constitutional democracy in the Middle East, reducing America's energy dependence on the Middle East, more robustly asserting U.S. interests vis-à-vis Saudi Arabia, and countering the Iranian threat. (Article URL: http://www.meforum.org/2691/france-burqa-ban)
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