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A Muslim Perspective: Boston’s Tragedy Must Not Generate More Hate

I also would like to strongly criticize those who express joy at the sight of horror in America.

A rally of Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA).

A rally of Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA).

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First and foremost, my prayers go out to the victims and their families in Boston. Just like we have a hard time understanding psychologically unhealthy people, we cannot understand what kind of man can be at war with innocents. History has witnessed many sick people leading others to commit atrocities, but there is one thing for certain; whatever the perpetrator or perpetrators might profess as a religion, they are not believers. If someone is capable of killing innocent people without so much as blinking an eye, then they are murderers with no fear of God. That is indisputable.

However, whenever there is a bombing or a mass shooting in public places like the atrocity in Sandy Hook School in Newtown, Connecticut, or the Aurora, Colorado massacre, or the 2011 Norway massacre, and many more, the worlds’ collective gaze shifts to “Muslims,” and some begin to express hateful sentiments even before the perpetuators are announced.

Just as it has become reflexive reaction in the Western world, to associate any attacks on civilians with Muslims, Muslims also hurry up to denounce the violence and want to make clear to the whole world that it is a violation of Islam, in case the murderer happens to have a Muslim identity.

Since these are times when emotions are high and people want quick justice, they sometimes seek targets to direct their anger. But inciting hatred, raising conflict and enmity, hatemongering, engaging in one-sided, aggressive propaganda and creating a climate of hysteria, or using the internet to incite a lynch mob, are also crimes.

As we have witnessed in the latest attack, while some react with common sense, others pour out words of hate targeting all Arabs and labeling all Muslims as potential murderers. For instance, a Fox News contributor—whether seriously or as satire—had the audacity to state that Muslims “…are evil…Let’s kill them all.” And I read a good many comments suggesting the extermination of Muslims.

But even if these voices are merely the ones being highlighted, these are still the voices of a minority, and very extreme examples at that. Some act this way because of pain and fear; others lack dignity and or even humanity in their soul – they are simply psychopaths.

While I say this, I also would like to strongly criticize those who express joy at the sight of horror in America, just because they think the American government’s foreign policies are wrong. On the other hand, I watched an Egyptian “cleric” saying this attack was definitely a jihad by mujahideen, adding that their execution was amateurish, and so it could not have been an Al-Qaida operation.

This chilling mindset is as horrifying to me, as a devout Muslim, as it is to any Westerner. The use of the concept of “jihad” for acts of aggression against innocent people is a great distortion of the true meaning of the term. Jihad—meaning to strive, to show an effort—is about telling people about Islam with knowledge, culture, love, affection and compassion; and to tell people the truth kindly, to treat them warmly, to respect their ideas, not to be ruthless toward them or shed blood, kill or hurt people or kill oneself.

I gave these two extreme examples because they do not represent the majority, and those who expressed them had no right to manipulate public feelings or opinion. Hatred and anger are likely to prevent people from thinking soundly and making just decisions. People can be inclined to injustice and cannot conduct themselves rationally when they let their anger guide their actions and words. So let us not accuse innocent people of acts they have never committed, or bear false witness against them. Let us keep some common sense, maintain our balance, and let us not give people the grounds to provoke. Even if they raise their voices, let us not permit them to misuse horrific atrocities to spread their poisonous and malicious propaganda.

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About the Author: Sinem Tezyapar is an executive producer on Turkish Television. She is a political and religious commentator and a peace activist. She can be reached on Facebook, and Twitter.


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142 Responses to “A Muslim Perspective: Boston’s Tragedy Must Not Generate More Hate”

  1. Lisa Davis says:

    How could The Jewish Press be so irresponsible:

    http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/1643.htm

  2. Lisa Davis says:

    Oh, but he must be wrong, because the one lone ranger from Turkey calls it "sickness."

  3. Man Salyk says:

    There are only two terrorist at the world: 1) The Great Devil USA and 2) Small Devil Israel.

  4. Man Salyk says:

    Zionist Jews was the only nation on earth strife.

  5. Donny Kligman says:

    This is what Islam is.
    Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 176: Narrated by 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "You (i.e. Muslims) will fight with the Jews till some of them will hide behind stones. The stones will (betray them) saying, 'O 'Abdullah (i.e. slave of Allah)! There is a Jew hiding behind me; so kill him.'" Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177: Narrated by Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. "O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him."

  6. Donny Kligman says:

    Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 176: Narrated by 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "You (i.e. Muslims) will fight with the Jews till some of them will hide behind stones. The stones will (betray them) saying, 'O 'Abdullah (i.e. slave of Allah)! There is a Jew hiding behind me; so kill him.'" Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177: Narrated by Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. "O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him."

  7. Donny Kligman says:

    Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 176: Narrated by 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "You (i.e. Muslims) will fight with the Jews till some of them will hide behind stones. The stones will (betray them) saying, 'O 'Abdullah (i.e. slave of Allah)! There is a Jew hiding behind me; so kill him.'" Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177: Narrated by Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. "O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him."

  8. It's amazingly clear to me that adherents to the faith are simply not up to the task of speaking the truth about itself, and I refuse to play along with it.

  9. Charles Soper says:

    Preach to the converts not the kaffirs about peace.

  10. Lisa Davis says:

    Thank you, Donny. That was very educational. It's a shame the editors of The Jewish Press failed to take their responsibility to us seriously and didn't take the time to investigate the false claims made in Sinem's article. As a result, they are complicit is perpetrating a false and dangerous narrative.

  11. Lisa Davis says:

    She can't do that, Charles. They would see right through her lies and call her an apostate.

  12. Lisa Davis says:

    Thank you, Liad! :)

  13. Lisa Davis says:

    I'll second that!

  14. Lisa Davis says:

    Can you imagine the absolute journalistic negligence to release such an offensive article as this. Can you imagine how the wounded victims and the families of loved ones who senselessly died the must feel to see their names dishonored with such lies, calling their perpetrators "psychopaths," instead of exposing the truth, so they wouldn't have died in vain? What an insult to our intelligence!

  15. I want to make a comment from my unlikely perch as being a member of a family that has lost two people to "State terrorism" and being the father of a son who just barely escaped from a terrorist attack that took the lives of his two best friends and 8 others. This article of Sinem is excellent. Especially at times of heated emotions, what is needed is what the article unveils as central – a balance and a focus on the issues to be dealt with and avoidance of indiscrimate accusations and fault finding. We don't need the harming or endangering of the innocent and we need utmost effort at concretizing and solving the true problem. The article is good and it was good to see published by the Jewish Press. In our own endeavors in what has struck our family, by restraining ourselves from indiscriminate flow over of emotional reaction, we have been able to focus on what really does matter. We have made progress because of this in what we endeavoring to do

  16. I want to make a comment from my unlikely perch as being a member of a family that has lost two people to "State terrorism" and being the father of a son who just barely escaped from a terrorist attack that took the lives of his two best friends and 8 others. This article of Sinem is excellent. Especially at times of heated emotions, what is needed is what the article unveils as central – a balance and a focus on the issues to be dealt with and avoidance of indiscrimate accusations and fault finding. We don't need the harming or endangering of the innocent and we need utmost effort at concretizing and solving the true problem. The article is good and it was good to see published by the Jewish Press. In our own endeavors in what has struck our family, by restraining ourselves from indiscriminate flow over of emotional reaction, we have been able to focus on what really does matter. We have made progress because of this in what we endeavoring to do.

  17. Scott Swanson says:

    Robert Werdine I will not be insulting to you, but I do have a few questions 1) what are you basing your suppositions about Islam on? 2) Is Islam based on the the lovely words of a beautiful women or the Life, instruction, and revelation of their Prophet Mohamed?

  18. Yori Yanover says:

    Scott Swanson — Simply put, Islam is the nearest religion to the Torah's definition of a proper gentile religion. It complies with the seven Noahide laws and it does not worship idols. This is not my own surmise, this is how the Shulchan Aruch rules. A Jew is permitted to pray inside a mosque, but is not allowed to even set foot inside a church. Our rabbis have had much worse issues with Christianity, and most opinions hold that it is plagued with idolatrous notions and serious problems with icons and symbols.

  19. Marie Bendavid says:

    SHAME ON YOU ALL! Sad…Jewess Press became now just one more Garbage disrespectful liar media that don´t deserve any credibility?

  20. Marie Bendavid says:

    WHY in heaven publishing that? what´s the REAL goal?

  21. Yori,
    Just to add – I have followed the recent writings of and reactions to Sinem Tezyapar and I have this to say, some of the reactions against her expressed here as comments to her article, are equaled or exceeded by some of the comments made against her by Muslims who are so opposed to her references to Jews having every right to be in Israel, to be right on the temple mount, that there really was a Holocaust horrific in its extent and fury, and other much pro Israel and pro jewish sentiment. She does not express this in the corner of some lounge in some Swiss Chalet, but in Turkey, which just last saw the revelation that Al Qaida terrorist attack had been thwarted in July that woud have seen the the American Embassy targeted , as well as a synagogue, and the mentor of her group assassinated – the group that had interviewed and welcomed such Jews as Chief Rabbi Meir Lau and Minister ****reet on their TV program. So M. Tezyapar could remain silent as to her views and be safe, unnoticed, and unattacked, or she could do just what she is doing. Those are her choices. I really commend you for having her articles on the Jewish Press.

  22. John Cousins says:

    Al Qaida… I love that phrase!

  23. Nanette CohenRayman says:

    The Koran says to kill Jews. Hamas, Hezbellah, Muz Bruthahood et al says to kill Jews. They do kill Jews. They also preach that we are pigs and that all Jews and Israel should be removed from the world. So why, Yori, do you continue to stick up for Islam? I bet the Fogel family, Danielle Sheffi, the victims of 9.11, the Boston Marathon bombing, and the victims of the Holocaust would disagree with you, if they could..after all, hitler and the Grand Mufti were in cahoots.

  24. Lisa Davis says:

    They've become an arm of the propaganda machine. This article is a disgrace. It minimizes the threat of terrorism and Jihad.

  25. It does not matter what YOU think Jihad means. It only matters that there is a number of people with power who think that there is a war on with the West.
    I know that the West is NOT at war with Islam.
    These men thought otherwise.

  26. Lisa Davis says:

    Yes, and do you recall how many rabbis were responsible for telling the Jews to remain before they were slaughtered in the Holocaust. This is dangerous publishing. You might have read Sinem's articles, but have you taken the time to research Adnan Oktar, the real voice behind the messenger? Her analogies are an outrage and dishonor the victims of the bombing. I did not give her my consent to be the ambassador of peace for Israel and the Jews. Peace and discourse can only be achieved when it's based on fact and truth. Sinem lies about the endemic hatred in Islamic doctrine. This does not do us a favor. It muddies the water and disarms us from very real risks!

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