The War on Terror and the "Peaceful" Religion: A Reality Check

How many of you non-Muslims have actually read the Koran? As a Christian, I have read it, cover to cover. I have also read and studied the Bible now more than 25 times and still read it daily. And I am one of those Type “A” personalities who can’t read anything without a highlighter in hand so I don't just read, I study.

Whether people like or accept it or not, it is a fact that the Bible has detailed historical records of violent action taken personally and/or directed by God Himself on behalf of and against the chosen people of Israel when they were in their infancy and also violent actions taken directly against their enemies many years ago. Some of this was necessarily brutal by today’s “modern” standards. At that nascent stage of their calling, violence was the only language they and mankind in general understood. The inspired Biblical writers recorded these events as part of the history of mankind and specifically Israel, not as perpetual doctrine.

The same is true of the Koran as it relates to the history of what would become Islam. However, the big difference is that neither the Old Testament Bible nor does Jesus Himself ever teach Christians that they should kill or even mistreat unbelievers (infidels). Even the original Ten Commandments, the Torah, never call for unprovoked violence against anyone. On the contrary, Jesus commanded that we love our enemies. He commanded that we love our neighbors as ourselves. And when pressed about who our “neighbor” was, the example He gave was that of someone who was an unbeliever, a Samaritan. While down through the ages and today there are still misguided groups of so called “Christians” who, in the name of their form of Christianity, call for our soldiers to die, say reprehensible things about homosexuals and mores, anyone who is intellectually honest knows that they do not represent Christianity or the Spirit of what the overall Bible message conveys. Even those who subscribe to taking Biblical verses out of context will be hard pressed to find Christian doctrinal verses calling for unprovoked violence against anyone and we certainly do not see daily images of people being slaughtered by radical Christians, blowing themselves up or raping young girls and children or cutting innocent people’s heads off all in the name of “Christianity”.

On the other hand, whether you are willing to accept it or not, the Koran commands violence against infidels, kuffar, all non-believers. The problem I see with Islam or rather a core group of those who follow Islam today is that they believe the Koranic commands to destroy unbelievers still apply today as opposed to when Islam was in its own nascent stages. In addition, they believe that the cultural “sharia laws” must also be strictly adhered to even today, again, under penalty of death. I believe that most Muslims do NOT follow this credo.

However, the fact remains that there are 1.6 Billion Muslims throughout the world. Let’s assume that only 3% (half of the latest estimate) are extremists willing to kill innocents simply because they are “infidels”. The world is then threatened by almost 50 MILLION fanatical killers. And I believe that the other 97% of Muslims haven't yet spoken out for fear of being killed themselves.
So where does this leave us? I firmly believe that until brave, courageous and truly “peaceful” Islamic leaders are willing to step up and bravely preach and teach an Islamic theology that clarifies the Koranic commands for violence as history applying only to a bygone era, that there truly is and will be an ongoing “War on terror” which is politically correct term for a war primarily against Islamic extremists.

As a matter of survival and logical necessity, we in the “West” as well as the majority of Muslims and non-Muslims around the world are left with the unenviable, painful yet crystal clear choice of fighting and eliminating those Islamic extremists who refuse to listen to reason and who would kill us and our children without hesitation or mercy or remorse. For about 97% of the Muslim world, Islam is generally practiced as a “peaceful” religion with a proper perspective on the violence verses in the Koran. But for about 50 MILLION others, the fact is that it is not practiced as a "peaceful" religion at all.

We owe it to common sense, to our families, to our nation, to our posterity and to our very existence and way of life to accept this reality and to stop deluding ourselves into thinking that they follow the same laws of civility that the rest of us subscribe to. We are duty bound to deal with this group as they are, not as we wish they would be. I pray that those who are meeting in Wales as I write this, especially our President, are willing to take the blinders off, summon up intestinal fortitude and drop the political correctness and face these hard facts. I also pray that the Muslim leaders around the world who are watching and listening are also willing to accept this and to step up and courageously lead as well. I believe that we and 97% of the Muslim world are largely on the same side of this issue. Like it or not, I sincerely believe that while our power and might will win most if not all of the military battles against Islamic extremists, the actual War itself can only be truly won by “peaceful” Muslims themselves and their religious and political leaders using the weapons of sound Koranic doctrinal interpretation.

In the meantime, if and until this happens, the war rages on and we must fight this war with every ounce of strength, passion and determination we possess. And we must have an unconditional objective of winning the war, not just making it a "manageable problem". We cannot negotiate with evil. It must be destroyed before it destroys all of us. To do otherwise would be a fool’s errand.

Respectfully,
Vinny