215,000,000 Christians Persecuted, Mostly by Muslims

  • In short, the overwhelming majority of persecution that these 215 million Christians experience around the world — especially the worst forms, such as rape and murder — occurs at the hands of Muslims.

  • If time is on the side of Christians living under Communist regimes, it is not on the side of Christians living under Islam. The center of the great Christian Byzantine Empire is now an increasingly intolerant, rapidly Islamizing Turkey. Carthage, once a bastion of Christianity — where one of Christendom's greatest theologians, St. Augustine, was born and where the New Testament canon was confirmed in 397 — is today 99% Muslim-majority Tunisia.

  • As what began in the seventh century comes closer to fruition and the entire world becomes more Islamic and "infidel" free, as in Iraq, confronting these uncomfortable facts is at least a welcome first step in countering the problem.

"215 million Christians experience high levels of persecution" around the world, according to Open Doors, a human rights organization. On its recently released World Watch List 2018, which ranks the world's 50 worst nations wherein to be Christian, 3,066 Christians were killed, 1,252 abducted, and 1,020 raped or sexually harassed on account of their faith; and 793 churches were attacked or destroyed.

The Islamic world had the lion's share of this persecution; 38 of the 50 worst nations are Muslim-majority. The report further cites "Islamic oppression" behind the "extreme persecution" that prevails in eight of the 10 worst nations. In short, the overwhelming majority of persecution that these 215 million Christians experience around the world — especially the worst forms, such as rape and murder — occurs at the hands of Muslims.

These Muslims come from all walks of life and reflect a variety of races, nationalities, languages, socio-economic and political circumstances. They include Muslims from among America's closest allies (Saudi Arabia #12 worst persecutor) and Muslims from its opponents (Iran #10); Muslims from rich nations (Qatar #27 and Kuwait #34) and Muslims from poor nations (Afghanistan #2, Somalia #3, and Yemen #9); Muslims from widely recognized "radical" nations (Pakistan #5), and Muslims from "moderate" nations (Malaysia #23 and Indonesia #38).

But if the World Watch List ranks North Korea — non-Islamic, communist — as the number one worst persecutor of Christians, why belabor the religious identity of Muslims? Surely North Korea's top spot suggests that Christian persecution is not intrinsic to the Islamic world but is rather a byproduct of repressive regimes and other socio-economic factors that proliferate throughout the Muslim world?

There are some important distinctions that need to be made. While Christians are indeed experiencing a "life of hell" in North Korea, overthrowing Kim Jong-un's regime could not only lead to a quick halt to this persecution but also to a rise of Christianity — as has happened recently in Russia. Under the Soviet Union, between 12 and 25 million Christians were killed for their faith[1], and approximately 153,000 churches were shut down.[2] Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, about a thousand churches have been (re)built every year, and, according to a 2014 Pew report, between 1991 and 2008, Russians identifying themselves as Orthodox Christian rose from 31% to 72%. That "South Korea is so distinctively Christian" reflects what could be in store — and creating fear for — its northern counterpart.

In the Islamic world, the fall of dictatorial regimes rarely seems to alleviate the sufferings of Christians. On the contrary, when secular dictators fall — Saddam in Iraq, Qaddafi in Libya, and attempts against Assad in Syria — persecution of Christian seems to rise as a grassroots byproduct. Today, Iraq is the eighth worst nation in the world in which to be Christian, Syria is fifteenth, and Libya seventh. Under dictators, these countries were significantly safer for religious minorities.

A militiaman from the Nineveh Plain Protection Units (NPU) walks through a destroyed church on November 8, 2016 in Qaraqosh, Iraq. The NPU is a militia made up of Assyrian Christians that was formed in late 2014 to defend against ISIS. Qaraqosh is a mostly Assyrian city near of Mosul that was captured by ISIS in August 2014, and liberated in November 2016. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

Similarly, the only countries that were part of the former Soviet Union that still persecute Christians are, rather tellingly, the Muslim-majority ones of Central Asia. These include Uzbekistan (#16 worst persecutor), Turkmenistan (#19), Tajikistan (#22), Kazakhstan (#28) and Azerbaijan (#45).[3]

The "extreme persecution" of Christians throughout the Muslim world is part of a continuum begun nearly fourteen hundred years ago. The same patterns of persecution are still prevalent — including attacks for blasphemy and apostasy, restrictions and attacks on churches, and a general contempt for — followed by the vile treatment of — "subhuman infidels."...

Nigeria: State Security Services arrest Christian pastor for converting Muslim girl to Christianity

“Nigeria security has declared war against Christians in this country.”

When Muhammadu Buhari became President of Nigeria, many warned that he would favor the nation’s Muslims and introduce aspects of Sharia. And here we are.

The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law. It’s based on the Qur’an: “They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah. But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.” (Qur’an 4:89)

A hadith depicts Muhammad saying: “Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him” (Bukhari 9.84.57). The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law according to all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence.

This is still the position of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence, both Sunni and Shi’ite. Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the most renowned and prominent Muslim cleric in the world, has stated: “The Muslim jurists are unanimous that apostates must be punished, yet they differ as to determining the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them. The majority of them, including the four main schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, and Hanbali) as well as the other four schools of jurisprudence (the four Shiite schools of Az-Zaidiyyah, Al-Ithna-‘ashriyyah, Al-Ja’fariyyah, and Az-Zaheriyyah) agree that apostates must be executed.”

Qaradawi also once famously said: “If they had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment, Islam wouldn’t exist today.”

More on this story. “Great Tension As Buhari’s Men Swing Into Action, Arrest A Popular Nigerian Pastor, For Daring To Interfere With Islam,” Post-Nigeria, January 19, 2018:

There are reports that a popular Nigerian Pastor, Simput Eagles Dafup, has been arrested and whisked away to an unknown destination, by men of the Department of State Security Services, DSS, for allegedly converting a Muslim girl to a Christian, in Plateau State.

This was made known to the Press by the Executive Director, Voice of Northern Christian Movement, Pastor Kallamu Musa Ali Dikwa.

Pastor Dikwa noted that controversy trailing the alleged conversion of a Muslim girl to Christianity, if not handled maturely, could result in something different between Christians and Muslims in the country.

He explained: “Nigeria security has declared war against Christians in this country. Simput Eagles Dafup was taken away from his house in Jos, on Monday, 8th January 2018, by DSS men, for alleged preaching and converting Miss Nabila Umar Sanda Galadima, the Galadima Biu Emirate Council in Borno State.

“Muslims have abducted 100 Christian girls under the age of 18 and forcefully converted them to lslam and we have reported to security agencies severally but no arrest was made or return of Christian girls to their parents....

Amid unprecedented needs, UN, aid partners launch largest consolidated humanitarian appeal for Yemen

With the crisis in war-ravaged Yemen continuing to deteriorate, United Nations agencies and humanitarian partners have launched a $2.96 billion response plan to reach over 13 million people with lifesaving assistance.

UN and partners launch largest-ever humanitarian appeal for Yemen

With the crisis in war-ravaged Yemen continuing to deteriorate, United Nations agencies and humanitarian partners have launched a $2.96 billion response plan to reach over 13 million people with lifesaving assistance.

Syrian children succumb to freezing temperatures while crossing into Lebanon – UNICEF

At least 12 Syrians, including two children, lost their lives to the bitter cold in eastern Lebanon as they tried to enter the country, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) reported Saturday, warning that there are fears more could be trapped along the route.

One in four Iraqi children impacted by conflict, poverty; education key for lasting peace – UNICEF

More than four million children have been impacted by extreme violence in Iraq, many robbed of their childhood and forced to fight on the frontlines, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said Friday.

The hypocrisy of child abuse in many Muslim countries

Child marriage and pederasty are tolerated in Muslim societies where homosexuality is strictly condemned

Some Muslims are fond of condemning western morality – alcoholism, nudity, premarital sex and homosexuality often being cited as examples. But Muslims do not have a monopoly on morality. In the west, child marriages and sex with children are illegal. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for many Muslim countries.

I recently saw the documentary on the Dancing Boys of Afghanistan. It exposed an ancient custom called "bacha bazi" (boy for play), where rich men buy boys as young as 11 from impoverished families for sexual slavery. The boys are dressed in women's clothes and made to dance and sing at parties, before being carted away by the men for sex. Owning boys is considered a symbol of status and one former warlord boasted of having up to 3,000 boys over a 20-year period, even though he was married, with two sons. The involvement of the police and inaction of the government means this form of child prostitution is widespread.

The moral hypocrisy is outrageous in a country where homosexuality is not only strictly forbidden but savagely punished, even between two consenting adults. However, men who sodomise young boys are not considered homosexuals or paedophiles. The love of young boys is not a phenomenon restricted to Afghanistan; homosexual pederasty is common in neighbouring Pakistan, too. In my view, repression of sexuality and extreme gender apartheid is to blame.

And in the Middle East, it's young girls who are considered desirable and men are able to satisfy their lusts legally through child marriages. In Yemen, more than a quarter of girls are married before the age of 15. Cases of girls dying during childbirth are not unusual, and recently, one 12-year-old child bride even died from internal bleeding following sexual intercourse. In another case, a 12-year-old girl was married to an 80-year-old man in Saudi Arabia.

So why is the practice of child marriage sanctioned in Muslim countries? Unfortunately, ultra-conservative religious authorities justify this old tribal custom by citing the prophet Muhammad's marriage to Aisha. They allege Aisha was nine years old when the prophet married her. But they focus conveniently on selected Islamic texts to support their opinions, while ignoring vast number of other texts and historical information, which suggests Aisha was much older, putting her age of marriage at 19. Child marriage is against Islam as the Qur'an is clear that intellectual maturity is the basis for deciding age of marriage, and not puberty, as suggested by these clerics.

Whatever one's view on the prophet's marriage, no faith can claim moral superiority since child marriages have been practised in various cultures and societies across the world at one time or another. In modern times, though, marrying children is no longer acceptable and no excuse should be used to justify this.

I find the false adherence to Islamic principles and the "holier than thou" attitude of some Muslim societies similar to the blatant hypocrisy and double standards of 19th-century Victorian Britain, where the outward appearance of dignity and prudishness camouflaged an extreme prevalence of sexual and moral depravity behind closed doors. In those days, too, there were many men willing to pay to have sex with children – until a plethora of social movements arose that resulted in changes in laws and attitudes in society.

A similar shift in social attitudes is also required in traditional Muslim societies. Having boy sex slaves or child brides should not be seen as badges of honour. Instead, Muslims need to do more to attach shame to such practices; otherwise, acceptance of this behaviour will make them complicit in the sexual exploitation of children. I fail to understand why Muslims are so vocal on abuses by the west in Abu Ghraib, Guant?namo, Iraq and Afghanistan, but display moral blindness when it comes to children? It's about time this silence was broken, so these violations of innocence can be stopped.

A too-passive attitude in dealing with child abuse has rubbed off on Muslim communities in Britain, too. I have heard many stories at first hand of child sexual abuse and rape, which show that the issue is not being addressed at all. Those who have had the courage to speak out have been met with reactions of denial and shame. Such attitudes mean that children will continue to suffer in silence. Sexual abuse of children happens in all communities, as has been revealed by the recent Catholic church scandal. At least, they have finally started to take action. Muslim communities should learn from this and also start being more open, instead of continuing to sweeping the issue under the carpet.

I am finding that more and more Muslims feel it is their duty to criticise others for actions they consider sinful – quoting the following popular saying of Muhammad to justify their interference:

"If you see something wrong, you should correct it with your hand and if you are unable to, then speak out against it and if you cannot do that, then feel that it is wrong in your heart."

I wonder how, then, Muslims can remain silent when it comes to the sexual abuse of children?


A Woman Under Sharia: 8 Reasons Why Islamic Law Endangers Women

An essential, scholarly comparison of the rights of women under Sharia and in the West.



Women in the West are viewed as being equal to men from both an ontological and juridical perspective. Now, that is not to say that women have never been unjustly discriminated against in the West. On the contrary, it is a sad truth of history that throughout the centuries women in Western societies were often discriminated against.

Indeed, suffrage was only granted to American women in 1920, with the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment, which states that “the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” But for at least the past few decades in the West, the predominant idea is that men and women are equal, and that women are entitled to the same basic rights that men enjoy.

Nowadays there are many principles that are enshrined in Western law to protect the rights of women. For example, in the West, the testimony of a woman is universally held—including in courts—to have the same value as the testimony of a man. Domestic violence against wives in the West is strictly prohibited, though unfortunately it is still practiced by some husbands. Furthermore, divorce is just as easy for a wife as it is for a husband to file for.

In addition, there is no discrimination against women when it comes to inheritance. Women are not disenfranchised of their fair share of inheritance just because they happen to be women. In the West women can also, for the most part, dress in any way that they desire without great social repercussions—and certainly not any legal repercussions.

The practice of polygamy is strictly prohibited in Western countries. The codification of monogamy into law goes at least as far back as Greco-Roman times. As a matter of fact, polygamy is seen in the West not only as an immoral practice but also as a practice that disenfranchises women. Moreover, Western countries take a strict stance on sexual exploitation and prohibit men from marrying or having sexual relations with pre-pubescent girls. And it goes without saying that Western countries strictly prohibit their soldiers from taking female sex slaves in times of war.

In sum, Western countries today treat women overall as equal to men, and there is no question that Western women enjoy individual freedoms. Western countries are the best places for women to live, where they can ascend to the highest seats of power in the land (think of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, UK Prime Minister Theresa May, and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton) through democratic processes, and where this is no theoretical obstacle to female leaders.

1. Under Sharia, Wives Can Be Beaten.

Whereas under Western laws women and men are equal, under Sharia women are not equal to men, but are considered inferior. Women are the object of many disparaging remarks in the earliest Islamic source texts, which form the basis for Sharia. For example, according to Q 4:34, husbands are allowed to beat their wives if they “fear disobedience” (which implies that actual disobedience need not occur for the beating to be justified):

Men are the managers of the affairs of women for that God has preferred in bounty one of them over another, and for that they have expended of their property. Righteous women are therefore obedient, guarding the secret for God’s guarding. And those you fear may be rebellious admonish; banish them to their couches, and beat them. If they then obey you, look not for any way against them; God is All-high, All-great.

That wife-beating is permissible given (imagined or real) behavioral misconduct on the part of the wife is also found in Muḥammad’s so-called “Farewell Address” or “Last Sermon,” which has been preserved in Ibn Isḥāq’s Sīra, the oldest and most reliable biography of Muḥammad that we possess.[1]

2. Under Sharia, Females Enjoy Fewer Rights than Males.

According to Q 2:282, the testimony of a woman is worth only half that of a man’s:

And bring to witness two witnesses from among your men. And if there are not two men [available], then a man and two women from those whom you accept as witnesses – so that if one of the women errs, then the other can remind her.

According to Q 4:11 and Q 4:176, a woman may inherit only half as much as her male brother does. Furthermore, as Professor Samīr Khalīl Samīr, a native Arabic speaker with two doctorates and the former adviser to Pope Benedict XVI on Islam and the Middle East, explains, ?under Sharia “in a [religiously] mixed marriage [where the wife is non-Muslim], the wife legally loses the right to her husband’s inheritance if she does not convert to Islam.”[2]

3. Under Sharia, Marriage and Sexual Intercourse with Pre-Pubescent Girls is Permissible.

According to Q 65:4, sexual relations with females who have not yet had their menstrual cycle (i.e., pre-pubescent girls) are permissible. The verse is found in the sixty-fifth chapter of al-Talāq (Divorce), which begins by stating that “when you divorce women, divorce them when they have reached (the end of) their waiting period (ʿidda); a waiting period or ʿidda is a certain amount of time that a Muslim man is supposed to wait before marrying a divorced woman, so as to make sure that she is not pregnant from her previous husband.”[3] It is in this context that we are to read Q 65:4, which states the following:

(As for) those of your women who have no hope of (further) menstruation: if you are in doubt, their waiting period is three months, and (also for) those who have not (yet) menstruated” [emphasis added].

Sayyid Qutb, the late prominent theoretician of the Muslim Brotherhood, explains in his renowned commentary on the Qur’ān (In the Shadow of the Qur’ān) that [Q 65:4] is referring to “women who are past the menopause and those who do not as yet have a menstrual cycle because they have not attained puberty or because of a malfunction in their system” [emphasis added].[4]

Thus, in the context of this Qur’ānic chapter on divorce, it seems that this verse is stating that Muslim men (or husbands) are to wait three months before divorcing pre-pubescent girls (for the reason of making sure that young and apparently borderline post-pubescent girls are not pregnant; cf. Q 2:228). This is not just some interpretation that modern Islamists like Sayyid Qutb came up with; rather, such an interpretation of Q 65:4 is mentioned at least as far back as al-Tabarī (839 – 923), one of our oldest and most important sources of early Islam.

Furthermore, the Andalusian Malikī jurisprudent and philosopher, Ibn Rushd (1126 – 1198), known to the West as “Averroes,” confirms the permissibility of having sexual relations with pre-pubescent girls in his legal handbook, Bidāyat al-Mujtahid wa Nihāyat al-Muqtaṣid (literally, “the beginning for him who interprets the sources independently and the end for him who wishes to limit himself”). In this work, and under the section entitled “the Waiting Period for Wives,” he states the following: “the divorced woman whose marriage stands consummated may or may not be one who menstruates. If she does not menstruate, she may be a minor or beyond the age of menstruation.[5]”

It should be noted here that ?one of the most renowned Muslim figures of all times ?is unequivocally implying that marriage and sexual relations with pre-pubescent girls in Islam are licit.

4. Under Sharia, Wives do not Share the Same Divorce Rights as Their Husbands.

Under Sharia, a husband can divorce his wife ?simply by stating, “you are divorced” three times in the presence of two adult mentally sound males, without even having to justify his decision, and he will retain custody of any children. In this connection, Professor Samir? states that “the most absurd thing is that if the husband later repents of his decision [of divorce] and wants to ‘recover’ his wife [for the third time], she must first marry another man who in his turn will repudiate her (Q 2:229-30).”[6] By contrast, no such power is given to the wife.

5. Under Sharia, Female Rulers are Frowned Upon.

Sharia frowns upon female rulers. This originates from a ḥadīth ?in Sahih al-Bukhari, the most trusted Muslim aḥadīth , where Muhammad, upon hearing the news that the people of? Persia had made the daughter of Khosrau their Queen, states: “Never will succeed such a nation as makes a woman their ruler.”[7] Indeed, this is one of the reasons that is often cited for why women cannot be caliphs.[8] Although this is what Sharia teaches in theory, the practicalities of life give rise to some exceptions. In the Muslim world you did occasionally have female rulers like Shajarat al-Durr (d. 1257) who ruled Egypt in Medieval times. In more recent times, Benazir Bhutto won the elections in Pakistan and became Prime Minister of that country for two non-consecutive terms (1988-90, and 1993-96). So did Shikha Hasina, who won elections three times and is currently the Prime Minister of Bangladesh.

6. Under Sharia, Wives Should be Subservient to their Husbands.

Under Sharia, a husband has absolute authority over his wife. As Professor Samir remarks: “A man can forbid his wife to go out from the home, even to go to the mosque, since in a ḥadīth Muḥammad tells a woman that her prayer has no value if it is done without her husband’s permission.”[9] This is confirmed by The Reliance of the Traveler, an authoritative fourteenth-century Shafiʿī legal manual written by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misrī (1302 – 1367). The manual states that “a woman may not leave the city without her husband or a member of her unmarriageable kin….accompanying her, unless the journey is obligatory, like the hajj. It is unlawful for her to travel otherwise, and unlawful for her husband to allow her.”[10]

Furthermore, under Sharia, polygyny is allowed, for Q 4:3 explicitly permits Muslim men to marry “what seems good to you of the women: two, or three, or four.”[11] Because of this verse, till this day in many Muslim countries it is permissible for a man to marry more than one wife.

Regardless of whether this custom was deemed to be socially acceptable by the seventh-century standards of Arabia, today only the very rare wife would find it permissible for her husband to marry another woman, let alone two or three more, even if she keeps her status as first wife.

7. Under Sharia, Women are Deemed Lacking in Faith and Intelligence.

As students of Islam know very well, Sharia does not just draw from Qur’ānic verses for its oppressive view of women. For it also draws on the aḥadīth (the so-called sayings of Muḥammad). In one such ?hadīth from Sahīh Al-Bukhārī, the most authoritative Sunni collection of ahādīth, Muḥammad states that the majority of the dwellers of hellfire are women, that women curse frequently and are ungrateful to their husbands, and, famously, that women are “deficient in intelligence and religion.” The full hadīth is as follows:

Once Allah’s Messenger [i.e., Muḥammad] went out to the Muṣalla [place of prayer] (to offer the prayer) of 'Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, “O women! Give alms, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women).” They asked, “Why is it so, O Allah’s Messenger?” He replied, “You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion than you. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you.” The women asked, “O Allah’s Messenger! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?” He said, “Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?” They replied in the affirmative. He said, “This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn’t it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?” The women replied in the affirmative. He said, “This is the deficiency in her religion [emphases added].”

Fundamentalist Muslims the world over insist on accepting this ḥadīth, which is virtually universally accepted as authentic or ṣahīh by even moderate Muslim scholars (who generally view just about everything in the collection of al-Bukahrī as authentic). Such aḥadīth have been a source of great injustice to women living in majority-Muslim countries.

8. Under Sharia, Raping Female Captives is Permissible.

What is particularly egregious in Sharia is that warriors are permitted to capture the women of “infidels” and use them for their sexual gratification. According to Q 4:3, Q 4:24, Q 23:5-6, Q 70:22-30, having female slaves, “those whom your right hand possess” (?...ا ?...لكت اي?...انك?..., transliterated as ma malikat aymānikum), is permissible.

Furthermore, interpreting ma malikat aymānikum as “female slaves” is not something that, pace Western-Muslim apologists, is only advanced by so-called Islamophobes. Our earliest tafsīr (Qur’ānic exegesis), the tafsīr of Muqātil Ibn Sulaymān, states that ma malikat aymānikum means walā’id (ولائد), which denotes female slaves.[12] This view has been held by many mufasirīn (exegetes) since medieval times, and A.J. Droge’s recent 2013 scholarly translation of the Qur’ān, which is, in my opinion, the best English translation around, explains the phrase “those whom your right hand possess” as straightforwardly referring to female slaves.

Having female slaves, Droge explains, is permissible even when the (Muslim) male is married.[13] Indeed, the Qur’ān contrasts female slaves with married women a few times, clearly demonstrating female slaves were not considered to be wives. ?There can be no doubt that in using the term ma malikat aymānikum, the Qur’ān is here referring to females who have been captured during war for the sexual gratification of their male captors. Indeed, reading Ibn Iṣhāq’s Sīrat Rasūl Allāh, we can discern that Muhammad himself took female concubines and permitted his warriors to do likewise as well.

Ibn Iṣhāq tells us that after Muhammad had 600 to 900 adult Jewish men of the tribe of Banu Quray beheaded and thrown into trenches for alleged treason, he “divided the property, wives, and children of Banu Quray among the Muslims.” Ibn Iṣhāq further relates that “the apostle sent Saʿd b. Zayd al-Anṣār brother of ‘Abdu’l-Ashhal with some of the captive women of Banu Quray to Najd and he sold them for horses and weapons [emphasis added].”[14]

Hence, according to Ibn Isḥāq, Muhammad enslaved women and sanctioned their being sold off (not much different from what ISIS militants are doing today with Yazidi women, no doubt modeling themselves after the Muhammad of the early Islamic sources). Furthermore, Ibn Iṣhāq tells us that “the apostle had chosen one of [the women of the tribe of?Banu Quray] for himself.”[15] In other words, Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, was himself ?taking female captives for his own sexual gratification.

We also read in the Sīra about what is ostensibly Muḥammad’s aggressive attack against the Jews of Khaybar (a Jewish-settled oasis about ninety-five miles north of Medina).[16] Ibn Iṣhāq reports on the authority of one ʿAbdullah b. Abū Najīḥ that on the day of the conquest of Khaybar, Muḥammad prohibited his fighters from having “carnal intercourse with pregnant women who were captured.”[17] The implicature of this prohibition is that carnal intercourse with non-pregnant women who were captured was permissible.

Furthermore, we read in Ibn Iṣhāq that “the women of Khaybar were distributed among the Muslims.”[18] That is, according to our earliest and best source on Muḥammad’s life, Muhammad ?sanctioned the sexual use of female slaves, or “those who you right hand possess,” to use Qur’ānic terminology.

In addition, when one reads the relatively early Islamic sources, one gleans that in the battle of Khaybar, Muḥammad himself had sexual intercourse with a captured woman, Ṣafiyyah bint Huyyay (Safiyyah, daughter of Huyyay), whose father Muḥammad had ordered killed, either the same night that he had her husband killed at Khaybar, or shortly thereafter on the way to Wādī al-Qurā (a “valley” which is located close to Khaybar).[19]

From Sahih al-Bukhari we learn that Suffiya, the “chief mistress of the tribes of Qurayza and An-Nadir” was originally considered by the Muslim victors as a slave woman or jārīya (جَارِيَةً), but that Muhammad manumitted her and subsequently “married” her (al-Ṭabarī tells us that this occurred after she accepted Islam).[20]

Ibn Isḥāq relates that when Muhammad first engaged in sexual relations with Ṣafiyyah (when he “married” her) in his tent (the same day or just a few days after killing her male folks), one Abū Ayyūb, Khālid b. Zayn,

passed the night girt with his sword, guarding the apostle [i.e., Muhammad] and going around the tent until the morning the apostle saw him there and asked him what he meant by his action. He replied, “I was afraid for you with this woman for you have killed her father, her husband, and her people, and till recently she was in unbelief, so I was afraid on your account.”[21]

The above excerpt makes it abundantly clear that the guard wanted to guard Muhammad because he perceived him to be forcefully having sex with someone who must have harbored deep resentment and hatred for him because of his slaughter of her kin, particularly her father and her husband.

Indeed, ʾAḥmad Ibn Yaḥyā al-Baladhūri (d. circa 892), one of earliest writers of Islamic history (particularly of the early Arab-Islamic conquests), relates that Ṣafiyya said the following:

Of all men the Prophet was the one I hated the most, for he had killed my husband, father and brother. But he kept saying “your father excited the Arabs to unite against me and he did this and that,” until the hatred [for Muhammad] was gone from me.[22]

So, if our earliest sources on Islam are to be trusted, Muhammad, after he conquered the oasis of Khaybar, claimed Ṣafiyya bint Huyyay as his sexual captive.[23] Indeed, if the earliest sources on Islam are to be trusted, then one must accept the commonsensical conclusion that Muhammad raped Ṣafiyya,[24] and allowed his followers to similarly rape women who were captured during battle.[25]

Typically Westernized Muslims, if they are even aware of the existence of such stories in the earliest and most reliable biography of Muhammad, will dismiss them as ahistorical, and as having nothing whatsoever to do with pure and unadulterated Islam. However, there is no non-ad hoc reason to believe that these unpleasant events are not historical, whilst at the same time affirming that records more consonant with Western sensibilities are.

Furthermore, bracketing the question of historicity, there is much less reason to believe that contemporary actions that are consonant with what is recounted in these stories are “unislamic”—for these stories come from sources that form the very heart and soul of Islam.[26] Certainly Islamists are not going to buy the idea that such stories are unislamic or ahistorical just because they are contrary to Western sensibilities.

The fact is that ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria, who are notorious for raping Yazidī women who they capture (sometimes shortly after killing their families and neighbors), are clearly acting within the interpretive parameters of traditional Islam and following the example of the Muhammad of the earliest Islamic sources.

In his legal handbook, Bidāyat al-Mujtahid wa Nihāyat al-Muqtaṣid,[27]the Malikī jurisprudent and philosopher Ibn Rushd confirms the permissibility of enslaving women after battle. In the section “Identification of the harm permitted to be inflicted upon the enemy,” Ibn Rushd states in no equivocal terms that Muhammad “enslaved women.”[28] Ostensibly the implication is that enslaving women after battle is justified, following the example of Muhammad.

There is no question that taking female captives in warfare is a practice that is sanctioned in the earliest Islamic sources; this practice or tradition is not just an innovation of groups like ISIS. And this is not just something that only so-called Islamophobic Westerners point out.

Indeed, Dr. Suʿad Ṣālih, former Dean of the Women’s College of Islamic and Arabic Studies at al-Azhar University in Egypt (the seat of Sunni learning), very explicitly and nonchalantly states that taking female slaves (milk al-yamīn) is Islamically permissible in a war against Muslim enemies. She gives an example involving Israelis, stating that were Israel to fall, it would be permissible to take Israeli women as captives and use them for sexual gratification in order to humiliate them.[29]

The irony that Dr. Suʿad Ṣālih, herself a woman, is sanctioning the sexual enslavement of female war captives, is completely lost on the former Azharī dean. But the irony is lost presumably because the former dean is utterly convinced that using female captives for sexual gratification is not something that is inhumane—after all, from her perspective, the flawless religion of Islam and the ideal for all mankind, Muhammad, sanction the practice....

Muslim Brotherhood Fact Sheet

... The Brotherhood uses democracy, but once in power it will replace democracy with fundamentalist shariah law because it is the “true democracy.” “The final, absolute message from heaven contains all the values which the secular world claims to have invented....Islam and its values antedated the West by founding true democracy.”
—Former Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammed Mahdi Akef, Nov. 2007[15]

????????? The Brotherhood’s view of women’s rights is to subjugate and segregate women: The ideal society would include “a campaign against ostentation in dress and loose behaviour…segregation of male and female students; private meetings between men and women, unless within the permitted degrees of relationship, to be counted as a crime for which both will be censured…prohibition of dancing and other such pastimes." —Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna, “Five Tracts”[16]

????????? The Brotherhood supports Female Genital Mutilation: “[the Americans] wage war on Muslim leaders, the traditions of its faith and its ideas. They even wage war against female circumcision, a practice current in 36 countries, which has been prevalent since the time of the Pharaohs.” —Former Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammed Mahdi Akef, 2007[17]

????????? The Brotherhood will not treat non-Muslim minorities, such as Coptic Christians, as equals. “Allah's word will reign supreme and the infidels' word will be inferior.” —Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammed Badi, Sept. 2010[18]

????????? The Brotherhood refuses to commit to continuing the Israel-Egypt peace treaty.[19]Muslim Brotherhood leaders have said that “as far as the movement is concerned, Israel is a Zionist entity occupying holy Arab and Islamic lands...and we will get rid of it no matter how long it takes.” —Former Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Muhammed Mahdi Akef, 2005 and 2007[20]

????????? The Brotherhood has anti-Semitic roots. It supported the Nazis, organized mass demonstrations against the Jews with slogans promoting ethnic cleansing like “Down with the Jews!” and “Jews get out of Egypt and Palestine!” in 1936; carried out a violent pogrom against Egypt’s Jews in November 1945; and made sure that Nazi collaborator and Palestinian Mufti al-Husseini was granted asylum in Egypt in 1946.[21]

????????? The Brotherhood remains virulently anti-Semitic. “Today the Jews are not the Israelites praised by Allah, but the descendants of the Israelites who defied His word. Allah was angry with them and turned them into monkeys and pigs….There is no doubt that the battle in which the Muslims overcome the Jews [will come]....In that battle the Muslims will fight the Jews and kill them." —Muslim Brotherhood Spiritual leader Yusuf al-Qaradawi[22]

?Produced by StandWithUs...

Rape and Adultery in Islam

Rape and Adultery

Why are rape victims often punished by Islamic courts as adulterers??

Under Islamic law, rape can only be proven if the rapist confesses or if there are four male witnesses.? Women who allege rape without the benefit of the act having been witnessed by four men (who presumably develop a conscience afterwards) are actually confessing to having sex.? If they or the accused happens to be married, then it is considered to be adultery.

Quran

Quran (2:282) - Establishes that a woman's testimony is worth only half that of a man's in court (there is no "he said/she said" gridlock in Islam).

Quran (24:4) - "And those who accuse free women then do not bring four witnesses, flog them..."? Strictly speaking, this verse addresses adultery (revealed at the very time that Muhammad's favorite wife was being accused of adultery on the basis of only three witnesses coincidentally enough).? However it is a part of the theological underpinning of the Sharia rule on rape, since strict Islamic law does not recognize rape if there are not four male witnesses or a confession.

Quran (24:13) - "Why did they not bring four witnesses of it? But as they have not brought witnesses they are liars before Allah."

Quran (2:223) - "Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will..."? There is no such thing as rape in marriage, as a man is permitted unrestricted sexual access to his wives.

Hadith and Sira

Sahih Bukhari (5:59:462) - The background for the Quranic requirement of four witnesses to adultery.? Muhammad's favorite wife, Aisha, was accused of cheating [on her polygamous husband].? Three witnesses corroborated the event, but Muhammad apparently did not want to believe it, and so established the arbitrary rule that four witnesses are required.

Notes

Rape of Muslim women is against Islamic law - although the rape of non-Muslim women is not, if they are 'captured in battle' or bought as slaves.? Even the rape of a Muslim woman is almost impossible to prove under strict Islamic law (Sharia).? If the man claims that the act was consensual sex, there is little that the woman can do to refute this.? Islam places the burden of avoiding sexual encounters of any sort on the woman.
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A recent fatwa from a mainstream Islamic site echoes this rule and even chides a victim of incest for complaining when she has no "evidence":

However, it is not permissible to accuse the father of rape without evidence. Indeed, the Sharee’ah put some special conditions for proving Zina (fornication or adultery) that are not required in case of other crimes. The crime of Zina is not confirmed except if the fornicator admits it, or with the testimony of four trustworthy men, while the testimony of women is not accepted.

Hence, the statement of this girl or the statement of her mother in itself does not Islamically prove anything against the father, especially when the latter denies it.

Therefore, if this daughter has no evidence to prove that her accusations are true, she should not have claimed that she was raped by her father and she should not have taken him to the court. (IslamWeb.net, Image)

Since it is incredibly unlikely that a child molester will violate his victim in front of "four trustworthy men", strict Sharia amounts to a free pass for sexual predators.
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Islamic law rejects forensic evidence such as DNA in favor of testimony.? An interesting situation thus sometimes develops in cases where a victim alleges rape but the man denies that sex even took place.? In the absence of four male witnesses, rape cannot be proven.? The woman's testimony then becomes a "confession" of adultery.? She can even be stoned, even though the male is unpunished since he never admitted to a sexual act.
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Some clerics blame rape on the woman.? Australian Sheik Feiz recently said a rape victim "has no one to blame but herself.? She displayed her beauty to the entire world... to tease man and appeal to his carnal nature."? Even his successor, who was brought in to mitigate the backlash, compared unveiled women to "sweet pastries," tempting 'hungry' men....

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