No John, “Allah Akbar” Does Not Mean “Thank God” and It Matters

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


27342

What’s in a word?

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) blasted Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade on Tuesday for questioning members of a Syrian opposition groups’ use of the phrase “Allahu Akbar” after what Kilmeade said “looks like a fighter jet being shot out of the sky.”

“I have a problem helping those people screaming that after a hit,” Kilmeade said.

McCain criticized Kilmeade for his skepticism of the phrase, which means “God is greater” or “God is the greatest” in Arabic.

“Would you have a problem with an American person saying ‘Thank God? Thank God?’” McCain said. “That’s what they’re saying. Come on! Of course they’re Muslims, but they’re moderates and I guarantee you they are moderates.”

They’re not saying Thank God. They’re not even saying Thank Allah. If they wanted to praise Allah for surviving, they would say “Alhamdulillah”.

The difference is significant. Allah Akbar is a proclamation of Islamic superiority in line with its Koranic mission of making Islam superior over all religions.

Koran 61:9. “He it is who has sent his Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth to make it victorious over all religions even though the infidels may resist.”

It’s not merely a praise of their deity, Allah. It’s a mission statement.

“We killed this man. This proves that our god is greater than his.”

McCain is being willfully ignorant when he conflates Thank God with Allahu Akbar.

The origin of Allah Akbar, which does not appear in the Koran, comes from the Hadith, during Mohammed’s genocide of the Jews.

“So, when the day dawned, the Jews came out with their bags and spades. When they saw the Prophet; they said, “Muhammad and his army!” The Prophet said, Allahu–Akbar! (Allah is Greater) and Khaibar is ruined, for whenever we approach a nation (i.e. enemy to fight) then it will be a miserable morning for those who have been warned.” Sahih Bukhari 4:52:195

Khaybar, Khaybar Ya Yahud Jash Muhammad Saya’ud, Khaybar, Khaybar, O Jews, Mohammed’s Army Will Return is still used as an anti-Semitic battle cry by Muslims today.

Like it, Allahu Akbar has clear hostile religious overtones. It’s used to denote the religious supremacism that is the fundamental mission of Islam.

Until Senator McCain gets that, he’s as clueless as any of the 1920s politicians who pretended that the Bolsheviks were just a bunch of social reformers.

  • Veracious_one

    McCain has been neglecting his medicine….

    • ebonystone

      Either that or over-dosing.

  • Biff Henderson

    When Islam’s Prophet cried Allah is Greater he is guilty of blasphemy for having acknowledged that through the actions of His Slaves Allah is at war with another deity. Oops.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    Of course they’re Muslims, but they’re moderates and I guarantee you they are moderates.”

    He’s insane. The existence of so-called moderate Muslims is a complete and utter impossibility, as all Muslims have totally, completely, and unconditionally submitted to the “will of Allah”, which in essence is Sharia, i.e., Islamic totalitarian law, under the pain of death for blasphemy and apostasy as the first and foremost prerequisite of Islam. Thus, any Muslim consciously disavowing that total, complete, and unconditional submission to Sharia would not become a so-called moderate Muslim. Instead, they would become an ex-Muslim apostate, which per the texts and tenets of Islam must be executed.

    McCain is bonkers, he’s a moron, he’s a very gullible useful idiot, and most of all he’s a turncoat and a traitor. All of you that voted for that unhinged loon should be bowing your respective heads in shame.

    Indeed, the Republican Party must go the way of the Whigs.

    • defcon 4

      What about the democraps? Are they our saviors here?

    • Paul of Alexandria

      No, I think that he’s simply self-deluded. Like other RINO’s he’s more worried about being liked than right.

    • mplo

      To put it this way, ObamaYoMoma: McCain and the GOP are a bunch of no-good S. O. B.’s, but the Democratic Party at large, including President Obama aren’t any good either. They’re two sides of the same coin (if one gets the drift), and they’ve both advocated and extended the use of gunboat diplomacy as a form of U. S. Foreign policy. As lousy as McCain is, don’t let President Obama fool you, either.

      • ObamaYoMoma

        I’m sorry but there is no such thing as gunboat diplomacy. It’s a loon argument cooked up by loons to dupe loons.

  • defcon 4

    Is McCain clueless? Or practicing Al Taqiyya as a true believer?

    • Gee

      I believe that he took too many hits in the head in Hanoi

  • Jakareh

    I don’t even think McCain is suffering from senile dementia. He’s just a no-good s.o.b. Even no-good s.o.b.s can become prisoners of war. And since we’re on the topic of John McCain, in 2008 he should have saturated the airwaves with Jeremiah Wright, B.O.’s mentor, hollering, “GOD DAMN AMERICA!” He didn’t do it because he was afraid the MSM would call him a “racist”, which of course, they did anyway. The bottom line is, if John McCain wasn’t willing to fight tooth and nail for the presidency, he shouldn’t have run. I can’t think of worse moral cowardice than not telling the truth about your opponent because it’s politically incorrect.

    • peanut

      1) The reason McCain lost in 2008 (good god, do we have to keep reliving this?) is he exercised extremely poor judgment in picking a running mate. “It’s the Palin, stupid” or better said, “It’s the stupid Palin”.
      2) All this crap about word meanings and conspiratorial intent is just that – crap. I feel for the vast majority of good, decent people caught it the crossfire of a few religious fanatics determined to make everyone believe as they do. But it’s not just the Christians in this country screwing everything up.

  • victor

    McCain does not have a clue about those people and what they are about. As a legislator and so ignorant about such an important matters that affect our lives and national security. He should just retire because those who keep voting for him do it out of sympathy.

  • DilloTank

    I think McCain is simply mistaken. About a lot of things. Maybe he is not able to choose good advisers. Maybe is is just too old.

    • rockyspoon

      His advisors have probably been infiltrated by the Muslim Brotherhood, just like Obama.
      Like one comment above said, we do indeed need another party–one that’s rational and FOR the US. The other two certainly aren’t.

      • moneekwa

        well he did pose for a photo op with known terrorists (apparently known to everyone but him) and then swears these rebels are the good guys. i bet they laughed their butts off. i can just see him trussed up like a hog with a dull hunting knife hacking at his throat, thinking “but you’re our friends!” about the dudes (joe the bomber?) wielding the knife. and wondering why are they “thanking god” about beheading him. he’s too stupid to be out in public, let alone set loose in dangerous countries. his mind is gone.

  • 8ball

    Being the son and grandson of Admirals didn’t prevent McCain from being 4th from the bottom of his class at the U.S. Naval Academy. He’s an imbecile.

  • fred

    we need a third party

  • AndysMom

    Did any of you happen to watch the Syrian dad who thought his little boy had been killed in the gas attack? When he learned that his son was alive, and some other men brought the boy home, you can clearly hear him state “Allah Akbar” over and over and over. The whole video is on youtube. I doubt that man is making some reference to hating infidels as he’s holding his boy in his arms… Let’s try to keep focused on the issue (not going to war) and not get sidetracked with McCain (who we all agree needs to retire).

    • ObamaYoMoma

      If you don’t believe that man hates infidels, then you are exceedingly naive. Not to mention, that his son is also being brought up cradle to grave like all Muslims to hate infidels as well. If you doubt me, then go to youtube and watch the many videos documenting it. Now I didn’t say they aren’t human, they are, but nonetheless they are the products of a civilization that is completely alien to ours, which is also extremely totalitarian as well.

      Now, on the other hand, the last thing I want to do is go to war over there, as both sides of that jihad are Muslims and therefore both sides are our eternal enemies. If we must do anything at all, we should arm both sides so that they can kill each other more. The more Muslims killed on both sides of the equation, the better off all we infidels will be.

      Indeed, the last thing we should do when we are fortunate enough to have Muslims killing each other is to intervene. As a matter of fact, we should look for more cracks and fissures within Islam to exploit to create more Muslim on Muslim violence.

    • sebs

      So suddenly you know better than those who posted here? Allah O Akbar means God is great or God is Greater
      you watched a man yelling now suddenly you know the language? Damned MORON!

    • Daniel Greenfield

      Allah Akbar means Allah is Great. It’s used in celebration, but the point is that it means something other than Thank God.

  • DogmaelJones1

    Mr. Greenfield: I don’t think it’s profitable to instruct John McCain on the meaning of the “Allah Akbar.” There’s nobody home.

    • defcon 4

      Alternatively, there is someone home and that someone is lying.

  • Butseriously

    Many Islamist slogans should be seen as an assault and thus banned:
    1. Screaming Allah Akbar while slaughtering children or while making thretening charges.
    2. Its a blessing to kill the infidels.
    3. Islam will dominate.
    4. Muslims are Palestinians.

    The last one is most appropriate for Christians – they are knowingly or unknowingly promoting a false, covert, genocidal premise, and VE VERE NOT AVARE is not a credible response. Of note the Pope’s own Roman ancestors dumped this name on Judea, the Jewish homeland – not any Islamic or Arab land.

    • defcon 4

      “Roman ancestors”? Huh? Romans were slaughtering and persecuting Christians.

      • Butseriously

        Not 1.2 M Jews? The term Christian never appeared before 2nd Century – read the actual archives again.

        • defcon 4

          Interesting, I never thought about it like that.

        • frjohnmorris

          You have been misinformed. Acts 11:15 records that Christians were first called Christians in Antioch a few years after the Resurrection of Christ. The heirs of the first Christians in Antioch still exist in Syria, which was then the capital of the Roman province of Syria. Unfortunately the continued existence of the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch is threatened by the rebels who have received aid and arms from the US. They have killed hundreds of Christians, desecrated ancient Churches and monasteries, and driven the Christians from Homs and other areas under their control. The rebels have kidnapped and presumably killed the Greek Orthodox Metropolitan and Syriac Orthodox Bishop of Aleppo, and a few weeks ago tried to assassinate the successor to St. Peter, who was the first Bishop of Antioch, the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch, John X, by firing on his cathedral in Damascus while the clergy were distributing food to the needy. If the rebels overthrow Assad, their goal is to turn Syria into an Islamic state complete with Sharia Law, which will guarantee further persecution of Christians. Why the U.S. should support the establishment of a state controlled by people with ties to Al Quida is totally beyond stupid.

          • Butseriously

            I can find no NT evidence before 4th C, none in 1st C and will appreciate such examples, because Christians are real believers & deserve some proof. Christians [not by that name] were killed only when they were seen as Jews. Basically, the number of Nezerim & Ebonites killed in the 1st century is so insignificant compared to the Jews it hardly counts relatively speaking. It can only be said that Rome killed over a million Jews, not Christians – and that Christians paid a big price and conquered pagan Rome in the 3rd century, officially in the 4th C. Jews were the lone & sole challengers of Rome, and set the trends for others.

          • frjohnmorris

            Read the Book of Acts. It was written by St.Luke during the 1st century. Acts 15:16 tells us that Christians were called Christians in Antioch. Clement of Rome uses the title Christian in his Epistle written at the beginning of the 2nd century. . Before the Romans, the Jews persecuted Christians. They even put a curse against Christians in the Synagogue ritual. Rome killed the Christians because they were Christians. Rome killed Jews because they revolted against the Romans in AD 70. And again during the Bar Kokhba revolt in AD 132.

          • Butseriously

            Don’t think so. Acts is not by Luke or by Jews or of the 1st century. We have no copy till 4th C. It is assumed 1st C by a retrospective improvisation by Christians. Jews did not persecute – it was Romans who persecuted Jews. There were no Christians in 1st C, the term was first used in 174 CE. Jews did not revolt – they were under Rome for 100 years before Jesus. They correctly revolted against insane Caligula’s heresy demand to worship Roman divine emperors in the temple, thereby the Jews were heroes and the sole defenders of Monotheism.

  • KuffarAkbar

    Why I have a problem with Allahu Akbar. http://www.mypracticalphilosophy.com/allahu_akbar.htm

  • arishsahani

    When our west and intellectual will get it. Saudi have great war plan to destroy your so called free nation. Just convert your poor , uneducated ,criminals and fools to islam and give them the book of saudis well written hate manual and make your locals to follow the saudis .make them first bow 25 times a day to them and make them slowly hate their own culture and land. In few years these local converts to islam will be their foot soldiers to destroy their own nations. Today 1.5 billions convert to islam all over destroying own land , based on saudi book ,their own nations and nations all around . Wake up O so called public leaders .Create new Laws to stop the rights of the new converts to islam who love the book of saudis and land of saudi to protect your non converts or get ready to division or take over your land by these new converts on the name of new God of saudis who hate all non converts and the nations they live and born as they love no one but saudi God and place called mecca.

  • EamonnDublin

    John McCain could make a decent speech prior to his presidential campaign. He could also take part very adequately in a serious poltical debate. Since losing in the presidential race, McCain has resumed his ability to debate and speak quite well. However, during his presidential campaign, he appeared to lose the ability to string two semi-intelligent sentences together. This inconsistency appears to indicate that McCain collapses under pressure – totally! Thank God he didn’t win the presidency. Oops, on second thoughts, we now have Obama instead!!! Where does the USA get these guys from? Surely, surely, a great country like the United States of America can do better than THAT?!!?

    • mplo

      There’s something about our whole system that breeds guys like McCain, the Bushes, the Clintons, Reagon, Nixon and Obama, and our system has to be changed. I voted for a third Party Candidate (i. e. Jill Stein, the Green Party Candidate) for POTUS in the fall of 2012 (I did a write-in ticket in 2008 at the POTUS polls.), and I have absolutely no regrets what. so. ever.

      I also might add that as long as the American Electorate at large continues to vote people into office that represent the present system that’s already in place, nothing is going to change.

  • lessthantolerant

    McCain is a crazy old man bent on being a warlord. Obama and him agree, we know its a bad idea.

  • JVictor

    When will the McCains and media and the rest of the world do a modicum of research instead of taking someone else’s word about this issue?

    The “god” with the moniker “Allah,” that has hijacked the souls and affections of billions of people, and has caused the deaths of countless millions of people is NOT the same God in the pages of the Jewish and Christian Bibles. “Allah” is the name given by Muhammed to the Babylonian moon god, which was one of hundreds of so-called “deities” in the days of Muhammed. Christians and Jews flatly rejected Muhammed’s vain attempts to convince them that his revelation was from the same God. They considered it to be a false demonic-inspired message. In fact, by his own admission, Muhammed was afraid of the “jin” (his own word which means demon) that first appeared to him in that cave.
    Allah is in no way form or fashion equivalent to Jehovah. Whenever the Muslims praise their god, they are giving the affection to something quite the opposite than Jehovah.

    • frjohnmorris

      Allah is simply the Arabic word for God. Arabic speaking Christians also use the word to address God. By the way Nushka Allah is Arabic for Thank God. Allahu Akbar has been the Muslim battle cry for centuries.

  • bob e

    it is tragic what has happened to this incredibly heroic man..
    time for him to call it a day..

  • edlancey

    He’s just completely unintelligent and gullible.

    I expect he asked his tour guides/henchman in Syria(or Washington for that matter) about all the allahakbaring and they said “my frent, eet eez just like “thank god” – and he believed them.

    In short, he is a moron and a permanent stain on the face of American democracy.

  • dndgaddy

    Mcain’s statement is consistent as to how he works in the senate… ignorance. I do not believe it is Brian K. who is ignorant in this case john!!!

  • semus

    “No fool like an old fool.” Unfortunately, this one keeps getting elected. His Presidential run was a shame also in my opinion.

  • JacksonPearson

    Allahu McRINO = An effing clueless nut job.

  • Elizabeth Cape Cod

    He’s probably taking cues from his brilliant liberal daughter now.

  • James Foard

    “You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons”. (1 Cor. 10:21)
    A satanist giving the devil sign and shouting “Hail Satan” is not the same as a devout Jew or Christian raising their hands and saying “Baruch Hashem Adonai”. John McCain needs to be on medication and put under proper medical care. He does not belong in the United States Senate.
    Correction: I mispoke. He does belong in the United States Senate. The entire United States Senate needs to be on medication and under a doctor’s care.
    . http://www.inplainsite.org/html/idol_worship.html

    • defcon 4

      I think the entire US government needs to be investigated for corruption.

  • gaafary

    It’s amazing the number of inaccuracies here. Allaho Akbar doesn’t mean Islam is superior. It simply means God is the greatest. Any true Christian or jew would believe the same. And by the way, true Muslims believe that their God is the God if Christians & Jews. Just because Jihadis or terrorists are using the phrase dorsn’t mean that all muslims use it in the same sense. It has been misused by many muslims just like what happens in any other followers of a religion.
    And by the way, It’s unbelievable the amount of hate speech against Muslims here!

    • LarryTX

      Your comprehension is lacking. The supremacy of Islam is implied by the correct translation “Allah is Greater” although you provide no evidence for your assertions. “Hate speech” is another race card for liberals who have nothing substantive to say.

      http://www.al-islam.org/a-commentary-on-prayer-muhsin-qaraati/7.htm

    • moneekwa

      true muslims believe nothing of the kind. if they did, they would not call christians and jews “infidels” or “unbelievers”, nor would they use terms like “sons of apes and pigs” to describe them. if you want to see “hate speech” go online and actually read the quran, which very clearly instructs that infidels should be killed.

  • John Hutchinson

    Excuse me. But exactly what is the difference between their “God is great” statement as they downed the plane of their enemy and the Americans celebrating on the streets when they killed bin laden. Both are just as unbecoming, at least to foreigners.

    • pfbonney

      I take it you are not an American, at least not in spirit. It sounds, to me, that you are defending the same people (jihadists) that killed 3,000 Americans on 9/11/2001.

      • John Hutchinson

        It is written “I take no pleasure in the death of anyone”. It can be well argued the bin Laden needed to be eliminated for purposes of deterrence etc. However, when Americans celebrated on the streets like they did, I wondered how differently were they than the people to whom they had taken vengeance.

        • pfbonney

          “It is written “I take no pleasure in the death of anyone”.”

          I Roman Catholic, I can respect that. All the best.

        • joe kulak

          There is no moral equivalence between America and the Soviet Union or jihadists. That you don’t get that is telling about your own moral vacuousness.

      • John Hutchinson

        It is also why, when the historians right the story instead of the partisans, G. H. Bush Sr. will be considered a class act in telling his people not to gloat over the fall of the Soviet Empire; thereby facilitating the transition with nary a shot fired.

  • docmusic

    Poor guy….too old to rock and roll tooo old to think straight.

  • docmusic

    another thing ….Sweden will go before any other western country.

  • Steve Austin

    what a idiot.

  • watchamouth

    You are dumb…radical islamic people are not christians, the are no where near christians..

  • stellastar23

    Learn a little bit of history before you post things that are blatantly false. Mohammed never had a genocide against the Jews. In fact, he had an alliance with the Jews and fought along side with them. LEARN SOMETHING YOU AMERICAN IGNORAMUS.

    • joe kulak

      It is you who are the ignoramus, or just as likely, a liar. Read the Hadith and the Sira. Mohammad slaughtered the three Jewish tribes of Medina that comprised half its population. He had a special hatred for the Jews because they refused to accept him as one of their prophets. Mohammed never forgot a slight.

  • Sigh

    “The difference is significant. Allah Akbar is a proclamation of Islamic superiority in line with its Koranic mission of making Islam superior over all religions.”

    Daniel bro…LOL…Allahu Akbar means “God is the Greatest. How the hell do we get to the BS that this is a proclaimation of muslims signifying that they are superior. Its not a statement which implies that MUSLIMS are superior…but rather that God is. I’m not even gonna go further…just I’m confused at how these radical conclusions are made..sigh. Stop lying plox.