The Twisted World of Reza Aslan

In this revealing video clip, interview Cameron Kash presses noted “moderate” Muslim Reza Aslan on why there is no visible and organized movement of moderate Muslims working against the jihadist understanding of Islam. Aslan, arrogant as ever, first trots out the tired line that those who think that peaceful Muslims aren’t speaking out against jihadists and Islamic supremacists just aren’t paying attention, dismissing those who think otherwise as “stupid.” Kash, however, to his credit, won’t be placated by nonsense, and presses him further.

Late in the clip Aslan clearly starts folding under a line of questioning that was far harder than the usual fawning he gets from interviewers, even though Kash is unflaggingly respectful and supportive. He says that because there is no central authority in Islam, no one can say that Osama bin Laden’s version of the religion is invalid, or that he is not a Muslim. This is actually true as far as it goes: there is no central authority in Islam. But in reality, the practice of takfir, or declaring that some individual or group has so deviated from the faith that it can no longer be called Muslim, is a time-honored principle of Islamic theology; that Aslan will not employ it against those Muslims who believe the way bin Laden did is revealing.

Also, Aslan makes no mention of the fact that jihadists make recruits among peaceful Muslims and justify their actions by reference to Islamic texts and teachings, and consistently portray themselves as the exponents of authentic Islam. It is perfectly reasonable for Cameron Kash to ask Aslan and his fellow “moderates” to fight that claim. Instead, Aslan makes fey gestures, bloviates and obfuscates.

Another interesting feature of this interview is the point where Aslan names some of those he contends are leading moderate Muslim spokesmen: Eboo Patel, Amina Wadud, Faisal Abdul Rauf and Daisy Khan.

Eboo Patel dissembles about Muhammad’s behavior and Islamic teaching; Amina Wadud, the only possibly genuine reformer in this group, aroused Muslim anger by having the temerity to lead prayers as a woman; Rauf has refused to denounce Hamaslied about his commitment to religious dialoguelied about whether the Islamic center planned for the Ground Zero site will contain a mosque or notlied about whether or not the project is getting foreign funding; and was involved with a group that helped fund the jihad flotilla against Israel. Daisy Khan has likewise engaged in lies about and defamation of freedom fighters.

That Aslan would try to pass off such an unsavory gang as “moderates” is not suprising, since he himself has recently been unmasked as a Board member of a front group for Iran’s bloody Islamic regime. Aslan is also a Left-fascist who has called for obstruction of our freedom of speech by means of vandalism of our pro-freedom ads. He has tried to pass off Iran’s genocidally-minded President Ahmadinejad as a liberal reformer. He has called on the U.S. Government to negotiate with Ahmadinejad himself, as well as with Hamas – that is, with two of the most barbaric and murderous adherents of Sharia. Aslan has even praised the jihad terror group Hizballah as “the most dynamic political and social organization in Lebanon,” as well as the Jew-hating, women-hating, kuffar-hating Muslim Brotherhood, which is dedicated in its own words to “eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within.” Aslan wrote: “The Muslim Brotherhood will have a significant role to play in post-Mubarak Egypt. And that is good thing.” We see now just how “good” things are becoming for non-Muslims and women in Egypt under Brotherhood rule.

But what do you expect from an “expert” who claims, in the video below, that Turkey is the second most populous Muslim country, and that Pakistan is third? He is only about 100 million people off. Though lionized by a corrupt and compromised mainstream media, Reza Aslan is — to use one of his own most favorite words — quite simply and obviously stupid.

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  • http://twitter.com/EricAllenBell @EricAllenBell

    Reza Alsan just said that Osama Bin Laden's interpretation of Islam is correct. This immaculated delusional fool has outsmarted himself into believing that there is no right or wrong and that everything is relative. The attraction to this flimsy belief is that it requires nothing in the way of accountability. This part of why the Left are such suckers for Islam. And it's also why Reza Aslan is presenting his message this way – as a professional propaganda minister, he knows exactly how to speak into the listening of the Left. And what's even worse is that he knows he is lying.

    • Schlomotion

      I started doing some research into the epicenter of Mr. Bell's support base. If you really want to see some religious fanatics and proponents of ethnic religious fundamentalism, you should check out Donald Dix, Carol Barreto, Derek Lopez, and Bruce Mayall who are the Act For America sponsors of polite Ku Klux Klan Lite meetings that sponsor talks given by Eric Bell.

      • kevinh

        Call them the Klu Klux Klan or call them Santa's Elves; it really doesn't matter. Just call Islam for what it is and put an end to its "progress".

  • Schlomotion

    What I gathered from this video is that Cameron Kash is a clever and persuasive impresario, and Reza Aslan is a clever and persuasive writer. Kash has a good radio show, and Aslan has a good media company. Aside from that, Kash was unable to convince Aslan to become a spokesman for "Reform Islam." Aslan provided a good reason for why he doesn't feel the need or the obligation to do that.

    Mr. Spencer is not satisfied. He believes that Mr. Aslan's answer warrants character assassination, griping, smearing, and the magnification of his passing comments into strident support for terrorism. Mr. Spencer is enraged that Mr. Aslan has taken the position of not fighting in the cosmic religious war. Mr. Spencer's article is thus an example of the fringe attacking the center for not being fanatical enough.

    • kevinh

      More accurately this is an example of the center defending the border while the self-proclaimed intellectual and cultural elite make a big to-do about something that really doesn't exist at all, that being such a thing as "moderate" Islam. The result is as you describe; Aslan is not convinced into being a spokesman for any type of "reformed" or even modern Islam, so the old barbaric will have to do instead.

  • flyingtiget

    another good article by robert.

  • Ghostwriter

    And from what I've gathered from your post,Schlomotion,is that you're not living in the same world as the rest of us are.

    • Mary Sue

      schlo motion is looking at our world through the looking glass. He ate the wrong side of the mushroom.

  • US Muslim

    Why even give Reza Aslan any credibility by holding him up as an example of a "moderate Muslim"? The guy is obviously a phony. There's Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, and then there's me…we both love the USA, are pro-Israel and strongly anti-extremist and anti-fundamentalist, all while being genuinely devout Muslims. Why is it what we don't get any airtime? I guess we don't make for good stories that fit the liberal agenda concerning "Muslim victimhood" or the quasi-conservative (as opposed to TRUE conservative) view regarding the "eternal Muslim enemy".

  • Jack

    Reza admits he cannot differentiate himself from Osama Bin Laden.

    Sharia law is the Koran + Hadith + Sunna worked out to its literal extreme.
    Haram is forbidden action, Halal is permited action. All actions are either one or the other.
    Rational thought has nothing to do with it. THIS IS ISLAM.

    Reza has no argument against this interpretation. He knows it is heresy to judge another muslim, and does not want death threats on his head. He is merely the soft face of Islam, where the engine is legal imposition of dictatorship of Islamic Law. What a suprise !!!!!

  • SillyGoose

    Reading this thread and then reading the comments after watching the first interview, I think it's safe to say that an academic mind and the mind of the average layman are quite different. I never understood how profoundly different they were until I stumbled upon this. I don't think any of you understood what Reza Aslan was trying to say. As academics, we literally read thousands of works, we spend years and decades of our lives dedicated to understanding a single topic and even then, there is no consensus on our work at the end of the day. When it comes to issues of religion, ethnicity, nationalism, race, gender etc, there are varying schools of thought and the amount of ideas circulating are mind-boggling and we quickly learn that there is no RIGHT answer to anything. We have learned quickly that a person who jumps to conclusions too soon about issues, and one who is rather extreme, actually is the least knowledgable. It is not elitist, and we are not trying to be pompous. It would be like if I, a PhD, decided that I know more than a medical physician because I enjoy reading medical articles and blogs and watch Dr. House and surf WebMD. Aslan's statement about how he can't make any assessment about who is right or wrong is simply a way to avoid pigeonholing an abstract as complex as religious beliefs into a very basic postulate. PS – I'm not a fan of Aslan and find him rather condescending at times…however, I thought he made some really valid points in this interview, it's a shame that you guys couldn't *appreciate* (ahem, understand) them.

  • Teresa Geib Bacon

    I realize this article is old but people need to see it when all they see now is his arrogant rear lying on tv. I watched and all he could do is talk about himself and his credentials. She did almost interrupt at one of those times, he went on and on about himself. A Muslim convert knows NOTHING about Jesus Christ if he did he would not have converted to Islam.

  • Sarah Nichols

    Agree. What kind of legit scholar feels that kind of insecure repetitive need to trot out his credentials like a hurt little boy….just answer the question, ding dong. He sounded ridiculously inept, especially in his overuse of the word, “stupid.” He was trying to intimidate Cameron into submission to his weak answers by saying, “look at me, I am a scholar, ” uh, sorry that doesn’t exactly work in this culture. It’s as if he likes to fancy himself a modern hip face of islam, but in his defensiveness, posturing, arrogance, and need to “humiliate,” he sadly actually fits the profile of a muslim terrorist cliche. He denies and equivocates like one, too. I can picture him surrounded by admiring college dumbasses like the Boston bombers or that vacuous chick interviewing him in the clip that strangely takes over the original video. Cameron did a great job by not fighting him, his point became increasingly obvious the longer Reza squirmed and failed to take it on with any honesty. He doesn’t have to be the leader to take on the jihadists. How about a very visible muslim specifically denouncing just one? Yea, didn’t think so.

  • gray_man

    “The majority of american believe the world is 6000 years old” ??? what a retard.