by Timothy Tay
The shooting of Salman Taseer, the governor of the leading Pakistani province of Punjab, at close range by a police officer who was assigned to protect him, had once again highlighted the extreme violence Muslim extremists will take for Allah and his Prophet.
Salman Taseer had been an outspoken critic of the strict blasphemy law and recently defended a Christian woman convicted of violating the law and sentenced to death.
Even as the killer was brought to court crowds showered him with rose petals and chanting of: “In the service of the Prophet, death is acceptable, Allah Akbar!”
Meanwhile in Egypt a suicide bomber blew himself up just outside a Coptic church in the port city of Alexandria on New Year’s Day that killed 23 people.
Why do Muslim extremists target Christians?
Al Qaeda was cited as the organisation behind the attack. What is clear is that extremists had created widespread unrest between Christian and Muslim Egyptians. But the more basic cause of this extremism is the teachings found in Qur’an and the Hadiths that sanction violence against Jews and Christians as infidels destined for destruction (Qur’an 98:6).
During the last century the world struggled through the turmoils set off by Farcism, Nazism and Communism. The world wars and cold wars of the last century are now replaced by worldwide terrorism and violent persecution carried out by a far more dominating and uncompromising force. Islam requires its followers to submit fully in all aspects of living and for nations under Islam to comply with the Sharia laws.
After 9/11 air travel is no longer safe. Yet the inconvenience of air travel is nothing in comparison to the threats posed by nations under the influence of extremists, particularly, those with existing or potential nuclear arsenals at their disposals. This inconvenient truth is before us today. Where will all these lead us? Will the world survive the clash of civilisations that appear to oppose and threaten each other’s survival?
Will the moderate Muslims rise to the defence and diffuse the destructive works of the extremists by emphasising the aspects of Qur’an touching on compassion and respect for individual rights? It is a tall order considering that Prophet Mohammad himself resorted to violence in order to gain power, wealth and influence.
Alternately the moderates may direct attention to the coming of the Mahdi, a messianic figure, as one who will fill the world with justice and fairness without resorting to violence to obtain compliance to his beliefs. The truth is that the ultimate solution is not found in man or the makings of man but in God and only through Him alone that peace may reign.
‘I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world’, said Jesus Christ (John 16:33).
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. (John 3:19)