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Mar 02 2013

Al Qaeda has a magazine?

Apparently, they publish semi-irregularly an online magazine called Inspire. I’ve never seen a copy — and there have been cases of people in the UK being jailed for possessing a copy, so I don’t recommend that you go searching for one — but the latest issue includes this inspiring promotional piece.

inspirepreview

It’s an inspiring bit of mindfuckery, all right: don’t you just love the association of guns, bullets, blood splatter, and “peace be upon him”? And then to include a hitlist: I stand in awe of the religion of peace.

One cute thing I noticed about the list, too: everyone gets a picture, except Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Molly Norris, the two women being targeted. To threaten them with violent death is perfectly acceptable, but to show the bewitching faces of women to the faithful…that is simply beyond the pale.

In case you’ve forgotten who Molly Norris is, she’s the cartoonist who lightly proposed a “draw Mohammed” day, and got condemned to death by Muslims around the world for her offense. She’s since dropped out of sight, hiding from killers, all for drawing this silly little comic.

Everybody_Draw_Mohammed_Day

The fanatics have not forgotten this grievous insult ever since, and a young woman has basically had her life ruined because of the hatred of a few high-ranking clerical goons.

51 comments

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  1. 1
    Dick the Damned

    “Islam,the religion of peace”. Like fuck!

  2. 2
    Gregory in Seattle

    I’ve read a lot of evidence that this is actually the product of conservative Christian extremists in the US as a source of anti-Muslim propaganda.

  3. 3
  4. 4
    Rich Woods

    Islam is neither a religion of peace nor a religion of war. It’s just a religion, like any other, and open to use and abuse for their own purposes by hateful, fuckbrained arseholes.

  5. 5
    Nick Gotts

    Gregory in Seattle@2,

    Source?

  6. 6
    Kevin

    I’ve read a lot of evidence that 9/11 was an inside job, and that the Illuminati are using the United Nations to steal our guns in order to establish a New World Order.

    And aliens.

  7. 7
    Ace of Sevens

    @Gregory: That doesn’t sound right. This is as likely to inspire anti-gun as anti-Muslim political sentiment. I can’t see conservative Christians doing that.

  8. 8
    Draken

    I hope it’s a more interesting read than the Baader-Meinhof Zeitung with its blablabla class warfare blah revolution bla bla class warfare blabla.

  9. 9
    karpad

    I can’t see this as inspiring any anti-gun sentiment in anyone who wasn’t already particularly anti-gun. But someone who is simply ignorant, not hateful, of islam could easily be swayed by this. If it’s a false flag, it would do the job well.

    Doesn’t mean it is, but I don’t think that criticism holds.

  10. 10
    grumpyoldfart

    The fanatics have not forgotten this grievous insult ever since, and a young woman has basically had her life ruined because of the hatred of a few high-ranking clerical goons.

    How many hundreds of millions of Muslims are there in the world? Is it impossible for them to tell those “few high ranking clerical goons” to shut up and behave properly? Or do the rank and file secretly agree that a blood and guts religion is exactly what they want?

  11. 11
    autumn

    Great thing about free press and speech is that it allows one to know exactly which nutcases to stay the fuck away from.

  12. 12
    Ace of Sevens

    @grumpyoldfart: Telling them doesn’t do much good. Do atheists support all the wacky stuff every alleged senior atheist says?

  13. 13
    Ace of Sevens

    Example: Allain de Botton

  14. 14
    tsig

    “How many hundreds of millions of Muslims are there in the world? Is it impossible for them to tell those “few high ranking clerical goons” to shut up and behave properly? Or do the rank and file secretly agree that a blood and guts religion is exactly what they want?”

    The rank and file agree very vocally that killing those who insult the prophet is the will of Allah.

  15. 15
    Rey Fox

    This is as likely to inspire anti-gun as anti-Muslim political sentiment.

    Nah. Showing scary people with guns just drums up support for more guns. Guns + guns = peace (hopefully) (for the right people)

  16. 16
    Gregory Greenwood

    Ace of Sevens @ 7;

    That doesn’t sound right. This is as likely to inspire anti-gun as anti-Muslim political sentiment. I can’t see conservative Christians doing that.

    You are forgetting that, in the minds of fundie xian gun nuts, a gun in the hands of a good, god fearin’, (Confederate) flag lovin’, Republican pasty white man = the very essence of freedom, the lifeblood of the Union, and the ultimate guarantor of truth, justice and the American Way.

    But that same gun in the hands of a scary brown person (particularly a scary, foreign brown person who believes in a scary, foreign, brown person god) = the harbinger of the apocalypse, the manifest doom of civilisation, and proof positive that the liberals/feminists/atheists/homosexuals (delete as appropriate, or include under ‘all of the above’) are destroying America and leaving it defenceless before its monstrous (and brown, don’t forget brown) enemies…

    Welcome to the disgusting, bigoted, immoral mire that is the worldview of the American Religious Right.

  17. 17
    atheist

    Yep, Al Qaeda is truly fuckin’ insane, and they are indeed a bunch of terrorists. I didn’t know that Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Molly Norris were both marked for death by AQ. I’m still angry with Ms. Ali for joining the neo-conservative American Enterprise Institute and then arguing for the US to start more wars in the Middle East & crack down against American Muslims. I have to admit, though, that this puts a bit of perspective on the situation.

    I did not know the situation with Molly Norris either. I remember her starting the “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” and thinking that it was both an understandable response to the Comedy Central situation, but also a somewhat naive endeavor. I remember that after a short time her project became dominated by voices who used it to express hatred against Muslims, and that she herself spoke out against this, and actually ended up renouncing the project, which was then picked up by others. I have to admit that I had not considered her current situation and I am saddened and shocked, although I should not be.

    I suppose the takeaway is that terrorism – of any sort, not merely from Islamists – is very real and can be effective.

  18. 18
    atheist

    @tsig – 2 March 2013 at 11:23 am (UTC -6)

    The rank and file agree very vocally that killing those who insult the prophet is the will of Allah.

    A simple web search shows that you are wrong.

  19. 19
    atheist

    Oh, and you’re particularly clueless about American Muslims, tsig.

    Little Support for Terrorism Among American Muslims“, Dec 17, 2009, Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

  20. 20
    anuran

    #18 atheist:

    Hush. You’re supposed to follow the True American Party Line. Muslims – Dune Coons or Sand N***ers to be precise – are filthy stinking furriners even if they were born in Murrica.. They hate us for our freedoms and live for the opportunity to cut off little girls’ clitorises. They have no legitimate grievances against White Men, their natural Masters, and are all terrorists. That’s why we have to invade their countries and rain random death on them with Predator drones.

  21. 21
    Pierce R. Butler

    According to the overlay, that picture came from MEMRI (an anti-Arab/Muslim web site founded by a “former” Israeli intelligence operative).

    Treat anything from that source with all the confidence you’d give a report from Breitbart, WND, or Murdoch media.

  22. 22
    omnicrom

    I think the moderate Muslims are like the moderates in any other religious group: they are there, they are probably the majority, they are quietly in disagreement, and perhaps most importantly their presence lends cover for the real bastards.

    The vast majority of the Muslims in the world are peaceful, but like most non-hateful religious people they don’t speak out loudly to the fuckers who take their religion as an excuse to kill people they disagree with. By remaining silent and letting the fuckers have the podium and climb into leadership they indirectly aid and abet every Muslim leader who sees beheading is a completely fair response to criticism.

    Honestly I have more compassion for the moderate Muslims than the I do for the moderate Christians. Even as completely wrong and utterly hateful as the worst Christian leaders are they aren’t as dangerous as a Muslim Cleric who would sign a death warrant for you if publicly step out of line. But of course the problem remains the religion period. All the people who politely disagree with the idea that people who mock the prophet Mohamed should be butchered still encourage their religion by their participation and indirectly reinforce the vileness inherent in all religion.

  23. 23
    Rossignol

    I hope I’m not minimizing these death threats or the serious danger faced by those threatened here, but I find the use of the Star Wars font really distracting and weird.

  24. 24
    johnmorgan

    @ omnicron

    I think the moderate Muslims are like the moderates in any other religious group: they are there, they are probably the majority, they are quietly in disagreement … .

    It should be possible to test the waters (survey/questionnaire) to see if you are right. It is, after all, vital information for multicultural societies to have.

  25. 25
    crocodoc

    The whole thing is available here: http://azelin.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/inspire-magazine-issue-10.pdf

    A very interesting look into those people’s minds.

  26. 26
    Trebuchet

    Can someone with better eyes than me tell me who else is on the hit list? I can’t read it in the image.

  27. 27
    Trebuchet

    @me, just above: Never mind, I had failed to click the link. Never heard of the majority of those folks. And every time I see “Terry Jones”, I think of the Monty Python guy.

  28. 28
    johnmorgan

    This should ensure a certain journalist in Pakistan makes it onto the list.

    http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2013/03/01/comment/columns/elephant-in-the-room/

  29. 29
    coyotenose

    I was inclined for a few moments to think that this was bad satire or contrived as anti-Muslim propaganda, but anyone who would put this together and was not a Muslim extremist wouldn’t think of only putting up photos of the male targets.

  30. 30
    Ichthyic

    can’t believe nobody recognizes the problem with this…

    How many hundreds of millions of Muslims Catholics are there in the world? Is it impossible for them to tell those “few high ranking clerical goons” to shut up and behave properly?

    see the problem now?

  31. 31
    ChristineRose

    There’s not really a ranking in the Muslim clergy. It’s pretty much a congregation thing and these fatwas are issued by scholars. You follow whichever scholar you or your parents choose. This of course leads to the obvious problem that any random man with anger issues can get attention for himself by issuing a nasty statement which the vast majority of Muslims rightly consider to be entirely meaningless and invalid.

    That last bit is what I think of when I see this magazine. I have to wonder how many socially-inept boys see this stuff and take it seriously. Unfortunately it doesn’t take many to cause a tragedy.

  32. 32
    ck

    I have to wonder how many socially-inept boys see this stuff and take it seriously. Unfortunately it doesn’t take many to cause a tragedy.

    Let’s not blame this on the socially inept. There’s nothing about being socially inept that means you want to destroy things. “Angry” is a better term for these people.

  33. 33
    lanir

    This is a year and a half old, but you may enjoy it is the magazine is news to you.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/terrorism-in-the-uk/8553366/MI6-attacks-al-Qaeda-in-Operation-Cupcake.html

  34. 34
    lippard

    I second Mr. Butler’s skepticism in #21. Re: MEMRI, see:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2002/aug/12/worlddispatch.brianwhitaker

  35. 35
    Gretchen

    Apparently the source, MEMRI, is not exactly trustworthy. See: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2002/aug/12/worlddispatch.brianwhitaker

  36. 36
    Gretchen

    Ah, dammit. I didn’t refresh quickly enough. :-)

  37. 37
    twosheds1

    Change a few words and it could be a fundy Christian piece. I asked a few Muslims online if you could still be marked for death if you drew Mohammed in a respectful, flattering portrait, showing him looking like, say, Omar Sharif. They said yes.

  38. 38
    anuran

    Of course, a few centuries ago it wasn’t uncommon for pious Muslim artists to do drawings and paintings of Mohammed. Fashions and taboos change.

  39. 39
    Great American Satan

    And a few years ago, south park depicted mohammed without a word of protest. We live in a very weird world. It’s like public sentiment is organized now in the same way as flashmobs.

  40. 40
    theophontes (恶六六六缓步动物)

    @ twosheds

    I asked a few Muslims online if you could still be marked for death if you drew Mohammed in a respectful, flattering portrait, showing him looking like, say, Omar Sharif. They said yes.

    Yet many of the pious will spend hours staring at themselves in the mirror and attempting all means and measures to look exactly like Mohammad.

    If you want to try this at home, go for a severely shorn moustache (you do not want to look like a Persian!), measure your beard by grasping it in your fist and trimming the bits that stick out. Hair must be half way between straight and curly, black and combed so as not to fall over the ears. Use black mascara to give the eyes deepity.

    Once you’ve got the look going, join the competition: Everybody Look Like Mohammad Day. Grand prizes to be won!

  41. 41
    Great American Satan

    Also, I second the annoyance with prominent ex-muslims joining american conservatives. That shit is fucked up, Ayaan. And that this looks like some CIA shit. Not that it isn’t in complete agreement with the beliefs of scumbagging terrorists, but the colloquial English and production of it… I ain’t a fucking 9-11 truther or conspiracy nut. This is the kind of shit the US government does. A little push here, a little push there to prop up their current goals.

    For example http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/the-long-con/Content?oid=7989613
    Someone with clout wanted eco-terrorists busted to make ecologically sound positions seem like the province of loonies, so they pretty much tried to create the terrorists through unscrupulous undercover actions and massive wasted effort and money.

    This happens in all branches of the government down to the DMV. Someone is elected or appointed with an ideological axe to grind, and implements policy changes or actions to support an agenda. This is the most harmful in agencies like the EPA, where appointing foxes to watch the henhouse is really bad for everyone concerned.

    So I imagine the CIA version goes like this: We want to do thing X in the region. If westerners are more aware of the outrages of Islamic terrorists, they’ll back our agenda. But this shit’s all in Arabic, and Americans don’t pay attention unless it has pictures! We’ll just format and publish it for them…

    Not a bad thing in that we really should be aware of what evil bastards are trying to do. But bad in that this slick commercial presentation of it may inspire domestic terrorism. Of course, that result helps certain government agendas too. It’s not that they want Americans to die. They’re just willing to risk it to play their little games and get the ends they want.

  42. 42
    esmith4102

    Ace: “@Gregory: That doesn’t sound right. This is as likely to inspire anti-gun as anti-Muslim political sentiment. I can’t see conservative Christians doing that.”
    Are you serious? Mormonism has always been seen as an abomination by the evangelical fundamentalist community, yet they were willing to drop their opposition and support Romney because they found a black president even more of an abomination. Never underestimate the hypocrisy and treachery ANY religious zealot is willing to participate in.

  43. 43
    anuran

    Yet many of the pious will spend hours staring at themselves in the mirror and attempting all means and measures to look exactly like Mohammad.

    If you want to try this at home, go for a severely shorn moustache (you do not want to look like a Persian!), measure your beard by grasping it in your fist and trimming the bits that stick out. Hair must be half way between straight and curly, black and combed so as not to fall over the ears. Use black mascara to give the eyes deepity.

    Don’t forget to completely shave off your mustache and dye your beard orange with henna.

  44. 44
    pacal

    The Web page has:

    “A Bullet a Day Keeps the Infidel Away”. So just why should anyone take this as a real Al Qaeda website?

  45. 45
    Samantha Vimes

    No one has mentioned the first line? I kind of think “Yes, we can” as a slogan lends credence to the idea that this was really put out to make Muslims look bad, as it seems to be trying to imply a connection between Muslim terrorists and Obama. If the phrase made more sense as part of the general message, maybe it was just coincidental, but it seems gratuitous, so I think the connection *is* the purpose.

  46. 46
    birgerjohansson

    This has been around the internet for a day now. Can anyone confirm that it is a real AQ magazine, and not a false flag one?
    — — — — — — —
    Every draw Mohammed day: Can we not just draw a picture of a house, and say “Muhammed is standing behind the house”? Or add two stick figures and say “one of these three is Muhammed”!

    Another variant: a whole army of shopping mall Santas: one of these is actually Muhammed in disguise”!

  47. 47
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    @tsig #14

    The rank and file agree very vocally that killing those who insult the prophet is the will of Allah.

    I know a few Muslims and can categorically state that you are talking bollocks.

  48. 48
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    @Great1American1Satan

    And that this looks like some CIA shit. Not that it isn’t in complete agreement with the beliefs of scumbagging terrorists, but the colloquial English and production of it… I ain’t a fucking 9-11 truther or conspiracy nut.

    The website and it’s content could quite easily have been set up/written by a British or American Muslim, or by someone educated in either of those countries.

  49. 49
    Nick Gotts

    Every draw Mohammed day: Can we not just draw a picture of a house, and say “Muhammed is standing behind the house”? Or add two stick figures and say “one of these three is Muhammed”! – birgirjohansson

    I suppose we could. Or we could admit that while the first DMD maybe had a valid political point, the whole idea was rapidly taken over by racists (and disowned by its originator), and that deliberately taunting members of what is an underprivileged minority group in our own societies is about as good an example of punching down as you could get.

  50. 50
    birgerjohansson

    Hmm…to thwart the racists, and avoid punching down, maybe we should help the segment of muslims (Shiíte) who still permit drawings of Muhammed. Notably the most persecuted of the Shiítes, the Alevi in Asia minor.
    We could build a BIG nice statue of Muhammed for them in one of the European countries that has a lot of Alevi immigrants (Germany?). That will piss off the racists, and the fundamentalists of two religions while showing support for a minority.
    I recommend including a lightning rod as an integral part of the design. Also, I predict some interesting situations developing whenever neo-Nazi protesters and Sunni fundie protesters double-book the site nearest the statue.

  51. 51
    nullifidian

    #29, coyotenose:
    I was inclined for a few moments to think that this was bad satire or contrived as anti-Muslim propaganda, but anyone who would put this together and was not a Muslim extremist wouldn’t think of only putting up photos of the male targets.

    That’s one reason why I think it’s fake. Pictures of women are not forbidden in majority Islamic countries. Just look at any issue of Lebanon’s Daily Star that covers the doings of Queen Noor, who doesn’t adopt even the hijab. Queen Raina of Jordan does the same. Now, arguably there might be a distinction between a mainstream Lebanese newspaper and the scribblings of far-right Islamic extremists, but still there’s no hint in the Muslim world that the mere picture of a woman might give offense. When the issue has arisen, for example, in the cases of Muslim women in niqab who don’t want to unveil for the camera, it’s the women themselves who object and there isn’t any suggestion that the picture itself would be immodest, but rather that unveiling in mixed company would be.

    I’m also wondering why the thing is published in English, when the vast majority of al-Qaeda’s propaganda statements haven’t been. That’s why MEMRI, the distributor (and originator?) of this magazine had such a field day translating statements of people like Osama bin Laden in ways calculated to influence U.S. policy and instill fear in the American people (case in point: days before the 2004 elections, MEMRI released a ‘translation’ in which they claimed that Osama bin Laden had pledged to attack those states that voted for Bush, but not those who voted for Kerry, when he had actually said nothing of the kind).

    The authenticity of this magazine has been discussed before, and to my mind Max Fisher makes some good points against accepting it at face value.

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