Mehdi Hasan makes the case that Islam is not a religion of extremism and violence.

Medhi Hasan On Islam

Mehdi Hasan makes the case that Islam is not a religion of extremism and violence.


  1. He's still a grown man who believes in the literal truth of the Quran, one of which eye-whoppers is the belief that an illiterate warlord born 1500 years ago somehow magically split the moon in two and then put it back together again.

    Anybody who holds such a tenuous grip of reality surely invites criticism for ANYTHING uttered from their mouth consequently. This isn't an Ad Hominen, it's far more serious than that.

    Hasan still comes across as the "Angry yet really trying to educate the infidels" Muslim whenever I see him. How can he realistically hope to convince anybody of his position when its so easily disproved? But more than that, what is the point in arguing with the faith afflicted?

    It's not like they are suddenly going to change their minds, its their entire world view that is shaped by their "belief", and beliefs are the hardest things to change.

    What we should never accept is a role for theocratic influence in the government sphere whether at a local or state level. Religion should be like admitting you are a Manchester United supporter, nobody likes you so you be sensible about it and do it behind closed doors.

    Small footnote though, neither Islamists or Judeo-Christians can claim ownership 'over' mathematics. Pythagoras predates them both by 500 to 1000 years and he would have heard of neither!

  2. It is extreme and violent in the Western understanding of the terms, although these are acts of worship for the believer. Mohammed himself committed 85 acts of Jihad (of the Sword) in his lifetime, these included genocidal slaughter of minorities. These same acts scripturally sanctioned IS treatment of the Yazidis in Iraq recently, and the slave markets in Libya for sub-Saharan Africans. Mehdi Hassan answers a Western political classes need for a palatable face of Islam, this moderate/extremist Muslim does not exist in Islam, there is only Muslim or non-Muslim. Neither I or Mehdi Hassan decide this, the criteria and authority reside in Islams texts.

    PS I notice few people claiming those Buddhists enacting violence in Myanmar have left their faith and cannot be considered Buddhist. Imagine my surprise.

  3. It would be helpful to know exactly what the previous speakers had said because Hasan is not reliable source.

    For instance Hasan rebuks 1 speaker for having claimed that Islam originated in Saudi Arabia -he does not clarify that Islam originated in the region now known as Saudi Arabia.

    The main problem I have with Hasan's approach is that it focuses only on the extreme extremists. Hasan turns a blind or approving eye to what I call 'moderate extremism'; things like FGM, the dangers to blasphemers, apostates or gays... or even Islam's opposition to the humane slaughter of animals. If Hasan were to take these forms of extremism into account then clearly Islam is a religion of extremism because these things are more representative of what Islam are about than anything ISIS can shock us with.

  4. Christie, it was from an Oxford debate with Anne Marie Waters :

    I dont think that is the right forum for such a discussion, when re-framing the debate beats answering the question (note how little relevant scripture Hassan references, and instead uses analogous reasoning)

    She is now leading For Britain, after losing the UKIP leadership election. She is from Dublin originally.


    “I kept telling him it hurts — please stop,” said the girl, whose body is so small an adult could circle her waist with two hands. “He told me that according to Islam he is allowed to rape an unbeliever”

    It’s like we spend our time talking about the 99% of Peter Sutcliffes life he wasn’t raping and murdering as an indication of his treatment of women.Making analogies that others were just as brutal as he in his moment as Yorkshire Ripper would seem odd too, yet complimentary analogies seem to sway lay audiences so well.

  6. peter sutcliffe!!!! howd he get here. is he a muslim too. are all muslims rapists or potential rapists in ur eyes. ur a potential rapist urself in certain feminist circles. also - a guy cald sulzberger owns the nytimes u linked above. good muslim name that.

  7. So people of other religions who own news papers are making up false claims about Muslims raping women and children as a method of converting their victims to Islam. We have never heard that type of sick defence of Islam before... though on a different note I suppose the Yorkshire raper could have been muslim, but I don't think he was.

    Daithi the Yorkshire rapist analogy is very evocative way of getting rid of all the chaff so to speak and good response to Hasan

  8. Correct grouch, instead of talking about Sutcliffe or The Lords Resistence Army, maybe we could talk about a Islam? Although I wouldn’t advise this in the current climate , that should worry people like Hassan. The pressure is building with no release.

  9. Thanks Christie, I borrowed it from Dr Bill Warner who does crucial analysis on Islam.

    I also agree with your point that it’s the totalitarian aspect of Islam , not just the jihad area, that makes it incompatible in the West .

    Although, it’s worth noting there was another stampede yesterday in London (Oxford street) when people thought a jihad attack was in motion, it shows people are still terrified . It’s this meta political backdrop that should cause Hassan concern, because when this manifests itself in terms of action, denouncing people as bigots ( or not scholars ) will no longer be an effective tactic for him.

  10. people who own newspapers are of one religion christy (the same one that owns the banks). thats why u never read in those papers about the endorsement of paedophilia in the talmud. there is no defence of islam in my comment, so its neither sick nor healthy. daithi, i dont think hassan is one bit worried about the likes of you or anything u have to say. and hes not the only one.

    "That all property of other nations belongs to the Jewish nation, which consequently is entitled to seize upon it without any scruples. An orthodox Jew is not bound to observe principles of morality towards people of other tribes. He may act contrary to morality, if profitable to himself or to Jews in general."

    Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat, 348

    is there anything like that in the koran.