Another Moderate Muslim Joins the Jihad: Mustafa Akyol

Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book, Arab Winter Comes to America: The Truth About the War We're In, is now available.


Over the years I have seen it happen more than once: a plausible “moderate Muslim” appears on the scene and becomes the darling of hopeful non-Muslims who believe that he epitomizes the peaceful, reasonable face of Islam upon which they have placed so much hope (and based so much policy). His non-Muslim patrons loudly sing his praises and denounce anyone who is rude or “Islamophobic” enough to examine his statements closely and find that they don’t actually amount to what those patrons think they do or wish they did: a genuinely peaceful and pluralistic version of Islam that is strong enough on Islamic grounds to convince Muslims that they should abandon jihad against Infidels in all its manifestations.

Not infrequently I have been the first to burst the bubbles of these “moderates,” thereby arousing the ire of the willfully ignorant and self-deceived, who found my unwillingness to be satisfied with these moderates’ blandly incomplete or deceptive versions of Islam to be evidence of my “Islamophobia” or bigotry or what have you. In reality, it was nothing of the kind. It was just an unwillingness to be fooled.

There was Khaleel Mohammed, who won many bemused non-Muslim hearts (and opened many non-Muslim wallets) by appearing in Obsession, but who later denounced the film as “Satanic.”

There was Ed Husain, who continues to bamboozle many in Britain, but not the redoubtable and clear-sighted Melanie Phillips, who saw through him when he began inciting young Muslims to hate Israel over earlier false charges of atrocities against Gazans.

There was Hamid Mir, who wowed audiences in the U.S. with his tales of interviewing Osama bin Laden and avowals of a peaceful, tolerant Islam, who was recently discovered to be aiding the Pakistani Taliban.

There is the cuddly Tarek Fatah, who reassures everyone with his comfortable manner — but who, when confronted with Wafa Sultan’s unblinking truth-telling about Islam and Muhammad, resorted in the blink of an eye to tried-and-true CAIR-like tactics of personal defamation and character assassination.

There have been others also, including a still-prominent, much-ballyhooed moderate who was caught in an interview decrying the Israeli “occupation” — but that is a story for another day. Today there is Mustafa Akyol, a Turkish moderate with whom I had several exchanges a few years ago.

Akyol, like Ed Husain and the other moderate I mentioned above, finds one great obstacle in the way of a lucrative and adulation-filled career as a “moderate”: Israel. It is one thing to sell unsuspecting and ignorant Infidels on the idea that Islam is peace. But Islamic antisemitism, based on the Qur’an’s designation of the Jews as the worst enemies of the Muslims (5:82) and their repeated cursing by Allah (2:62-65; 2:89; 5:59-60; 7:166; 9:30, etc.), is harder for even these “moderates” to shake off, and it leads them to take postures toward Israel that are frequently revealing.

I hate to say I told you so, but I don’t hate it all that much.

“Who the hell does Israel think she is?,” by Mustafa Akyol in the Hurriyet Daily News, June 1 (thanks to C. Cantoni):

Two days ago, Israeli forces attacked a humanitarian aid flotilla in international waters. The whole purpose of the activists on the raided Turkish ship, the Mavi Marmara, and several others around it, were to bring aid and supplies, including playgrounds for children, to Gaza. They paid the price by being the targets of Israeli machine guns.

Weapons.jpg
Aid and supplies from the Mavi Marmara
“Flotilla ‘Aid’ to Gaza Includes Expired Medicines, Old Equipment,” by Hillel Fendel for Israel National News, June 1: “Much of the equipment and supplies aboard the ‘humanitarian’ ships for Gaza has been checked and found to be worthless….An IDF source said that the poor condition of the supplies renders most of it unusable. ‘This once again strengthens the evaluation that the intentions of the flotilla organizers were not humanitarian in the first place,’ he said.”

Back to Akyol:

At least 10 unarmed civilians, most of whom are Turks, were killed. Dozens of others were injured.There is no need to mince words in the face of this atrocity: Israel has committed piracy, barbarism and state terrorism.

Beyond doing all these shamelessly, Israeli spokesmen have also lied shamelessly. One of them, Deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon, was doing exactly that when he portrayed the ship, and the whole aid flotilla, as full of people “well-known for their ties with global Jihad, Al-Qaeda and Hamas.”

Damned lies

In fact, the 600 or so activists in the flotilla were a diverse group from 32 countries and many faiths. They included Christian priests and secular humanists. They included Mairead Corrigan-Maguire, the 85-year-old Nobel peace laureate from North Ireland, and Hedy Epstein, a Holocaust survivor. They included children, including a 1-year-old.

Does the presence of these Useful Idiots actually refute the contention that the ship was also full of people tied to Al-Qaeda and other jihad groups? Of course not.

These two Dutch-language stories (thanks to Denise) reveal that one of the two Dutch citizens on the Flotilla, Amin Abou Rashed, is a Hamas leader who has also worked for the Al-Aksa Foundation, which was suspected of raising money for Hamas. One of the articles mentions that he lost his arm in battle against Israel.

Ayalon was also lying when he said, “we found weapons that were prepared in advance and used against our forces.” The Turkish authorities had checked the ships thoroughly before their departure, and there were simply no firearms on board. The only “weapons” that can be spoken of were the wooden or metal sticks that some of the activists had in their hands, apparently taken from the chairs or other ordinary materials on the vessels.Yesterday, Israel released the photos of some other “weapons” on board, which were just knives taken from the ship’s kitchen.

knives.jpg
Knives from the ship’s kitchen

knifewielding.jpg
The ship’s chef, no doubt

Akyol:

The video footage we have seen on TV actually gives a sense of what happened: Israeli commandos raided the ships at dawn, sliding down from helicopters via ropes with machine guns in their hands. Some of the activists on board took this as an assault on their ship, which was, to repeat, in international, not Israeli, waters. (How could they take it otherwise?) Then they tried to resist the commandos with the sticks in their hands. The soldiers, in return, fired on the activists, killing at least 10 people and injuring dozens.

Actually, the “activists” took it upon themselves to “resist the commandos” before the “commandos” had done anything. Here is the actual videotape — see for yourself:

From the Israeli point of view, everything is perfectly fine here: They have a policy of blockading Gaza, and those who defy it have to face the consequences.

Note that Akyol utters not a word about the indiscriminate rocket attacks upon Israeli civilians, launched from Gaza for many years.

The question is why in the world do people have to obey Israel’s dictates and recognize its inhumane blockade on Gaza?Who the hell is Israel, in other words, to force 1.5 million people to live in an open-air prison for years?

Scenes from that hellish open-air prison:

Gaza1.jpg
Gaza2.jpg

Gaza3.jpg

Akyol:

The answer from Israel is that “Hamas fires rockets from Gaza.” Well, the last time those rockets were flying in the air, Israel was also firing rockets (and phosphorus bombs) into Gaza, killing a hundred times more civilians than Hamas did. According to a United Nations report, the actions of both sides equally amounted to war crimes….

Akyol doesn’t mention that that UN report was funded by the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Nor does he bother to note that it has been thoroughly debunked.

Akyol:

There is even a more fundamental question here, relating to the elephant in the Middle Eastern room: Who the hell is Israel to occupy the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 1967, and to systematically steal these territories by building illegal settlements?

Question to Akyol: why didn’t the “Palestinians” fight against Egyptian “occupation” of Gaza and Jordanian “occupation” of the West Bank between 1948 and 1967?

And how can she expect the Palestinians, and other nations like us, the Turks, to bow down to this unabashed theft of land? When I asked that question to an Israeli hawk some years ago, I received a very revealing response: “Might,” he said, “makes right.”

Well, that might be a popular belief in Tel Aviv and Occupied Jerusalem, but not here in Istanbul. In fact our creed tells us that the exact opposite is true: Right, sooner or later, makes might.

The hundreds of heroes who sailed to Gaza last weekend had this faith in their hearts. Here in Turkey, 70 million more stand by them. We mourn for our fallen, but also know that they did not die in vain. Their sacrifice unveiled to the world not just the suffering of the innocents in the Gaza ghetto, but also the brutality of the rogue state that imposes it.

Read my lips: This spirit is really not going to die. We Turks will continue to stand for what is right, regardless of Israel’s might. None of her lobbying, bullying or killing is going to change that.

Nor will truth, evidently.

  • gamalpha

    Mr. Akyol, Are these the nice civilians that you say Ayalon lied about?
    http://www.memri.org/clip/en/0/0/0/0/0/0/2489.htm

  • Arnold Wolf

    Israel must show the world that it has backbone and destroy any violations of its blockade after one warning to get out. There is no collateral damage when the face of evil uses babies to hide behind.

    Israel must tell the Arab/Muslims to depart from all Israel or be underneath the K-mart parking lot in Gaza and West Bank. Hashem will provide the leader to demonstrate the power of the One G-d.

  • Kim Bruce

    If I were Israel I would lay mines within the boundary line with warning signs on buoys.

    Israel does not have to stand for this.
    It is a violation of their rights.
    They gave the flotilla plenty of warning, asked them not to land in Gaza and that the Israelis would transfer the goods, by land, to Gaza under the flotilla participants watch. They refused with "negative, we are landing in Gaza".

  • mikidiki

    Must hava alkyhol is obviously an alcoholic.

  • Jean

    Cute

  • TBone

    Turkey is ab abomination.
    Occupation? What about Cyprus? What about the Greek Orthodox Church? As an Orthodox Christian I cant even pray at the Agia Sophia without the fear of death by those who practice the religion of peace.

  • andrew

    all those knives, tools, and sticks look like kitchen and boat mechanics stuff i.e not arms as claimed in the article

    • USMCSniper

      Cut you just as good as a Samurai Katana.

    • Vic

      but each used to inflict great harm as any tool can you moron!

  • Vic

    does it matter that the knives came from the kitchen? isn't it at all possible that the user of said implement can inflict great harm whether it came from the kitchen or the toilet!?
    c'mon use your heads, this monsters were chanting "khaibar, khaibar…" gee what's that reference, oh yeah, something like "death to israel".. sick of these 'moderates' no such thing. islam teaches hate period! their minds are shackled, their hearts are blackened and satan rules in them! one goal: kill the infidel! When will we wake up?

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/winoceros winoceros

      The set up is complex and requires people suspending the normal human compunction for safety. That's not what this was for.

      The boats rendezvoused at a certain point in international waters. They knew they were (possibly) individually, but most definitely collectively, going to be tracked. The order of progression of the ships was five "no-incident" ships, and the sixth, which was packed with shahid. The shahid knew that they'd be put into battle with no or minimalist weapons, so the ship would appear to be "defenseless". The remainder of the passengers were useful idot types, activists, children, Nobel Prize Winners, former Leftist U.S. Naval Officers and leftists and Islamists of all types. The real plan was to surprise the Israelis, who have been using this very same boarding tactic for the several years the blockade has been in place. The crew on the sixth had all the time and information they needed from the arrival of the Israelis on the first five ships. Of course they were in contact with one another.
      (more)

      • http://intensedebate.com/people/winoceros winoceros

        Note, no ammo was used until it was clear that some of the Israelis had been disarmed and captured and taken below. They then needed to take over the ship using force or they would have found a few accidents down below that inadvertently resulted in empty necks.

        They did not realize they had been set up as a propaganda move, though all their efforts to date had been to avoid that very thing (paint pellet guns, rubber bullets, gas) so as to not appear to be harming the passengers of the ships sent to run the blockade. They would normally either clear the ships there, or escort them to one of at least three spots where the cargo was inspected for release into Gaza, which has no problem with food or supplies anyway.

        (more)

        • winoceros

          But set up they were. Per their own admission, the shahada expected to die in the attempt, and some were obliged. Note the wearing of white dress clothes by many of the chanting warriors. The ones who hate Jews are the very devout ones, just so you can tell the difference.

          The warriors were told they could only use items that would look opportunistic or use only their hands so that their deaths would be the Israelis' fault, and that self-defense would be harder to use. But the Israelis, realizing they were in deep with up to several hundred agressive people willing to throw them overboard, realized it was time to bring out the big guns and go below and get their men back (remember Gilad!!! Never forget!!).

          In the U.S., we do not leave men behind, and we bring and use whatever weaponry is necessary to achieve it. Islam cares so little for its followers that it would send a whole shipload to die for propaganda.

  • http://www.lifeshaven.net Utopian

    The history of Arabs against Jews goes back a long time. Arabs are descendants of a man named Ishmael, the son of Abraham. Both the Jews and Arabs come from the loins of Abraham. But each son had a different mother: one was his wife and the other a slave. It is the slave that hates the free and the blessed, as it is written, "And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him." Genesis 16:12. But in the end Ishmael worshiped the God of Abraham, not the god of Muhammad called allah. Therefore, Muslims dishonor their fathers Ishmael and Abraham in violation of the 5th Commandment.

  • Indioviejo

    Robert: Thank you for your tireless advocacy for truth and freedom. People like this Aykol fellow traveler, need to be exposed for what he is, a tool of Islamic Fascism. Don't ever relent your defense of civilization, there aren't many heros out there. Thanks again.

  • David

    I've been to Turkey several times (no love between me and Turkey) and after every visit I've been convinced more than before that Turkey and the Turks don't belong to Europe, the West and Western civilization. Israel is a democracy and a country of invention and innovation in every aspect and Turkey wants to go back to the 7th century Arabia or better called Barbaria. It is sad that there is a weird man at the White House who has a sick and weird mind not supporting Israel against an Islamist Turkey.

  • shesafraud

    hedy epstein is NOT a holocaust "survivor" in the true sense of the word. she spent the war in england, not one day in the camps, though her parents perished in them. and how she earns her living as a useful idiot on behalf of the savages who think hitler was too much of a gentleman.

  • Nessie

    Spot on about Akyol. He is a vile antisemite poorly masked as moderate who will print anything as long as it aims to show Jews in an artificially horrid light to his already hostile countrymen.