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Rantings of a Sandmonkey

Be forewarned: The writer of this blog is an extremely cynical, snarky, pro-US, secular, libertarian, disgruntled sandmonkey. If this is your cup of tea, please enjoy your stay here. If not, please sod off

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Religious Tolerance in Egypt

Writing about this is probably a bad idea, and GM agreed when i told him what the topic was. But since I am incorrigible once I set to talk about something, I figure I might as well give in sooner then later. My id is just too strong boys and girls, and one day it will be the end of me. Here is the thing, I was having this discussion with my co-workers about their favorite topic: Religion. This is funny to me cause you never discussed religion at the workplace in the US, yet here it’s like the prime topic of conversation. My friend O always told me that Egyptians had 2 fetishes: Religion and cell phones( we will discuss the cell phone one later) and he is right. They are all muslim and they all pray together, and they forward to each other all kinds of religious e-mails and stuff. And if someone sent u such an e-mail you don’t dare say anything bad about it. It’s like communist directives: Not to be discussed or criticized. Just nod your head and agree for your welfare and peace of mind. (I feel like I should just a create a series of posts that documents our discussions cause I find them rather telling. What you guys think?) Naturally that shit doesn’t always work out for me and I find myself –against my better judgment- sucked into an argument that I know is pointless. Yesterday was one of those days. The topic for discussion was the upcoming elections, which most of them seemed resigned to the idea that Mubarak will win it either way. That was not the discussion. The real discussion started once one of us wondered what will happen to the country when Mubarak dies. My friend and co-worker Hady ( all names changed of course) immediately predicted that the Muslim Brotherhood will start a revolution and take over Egypt, which seemed to be the consensus among the rest of the co-workers. Ok, no problem there; it’s a plausible prediction, nothing to get worked up about. That is until Hady smiled this really mischievous smile and in utter glee said “and when that happen, haha, all the Christians in Egypt will get what’s coming for them. They will be killed on the streets baby!”, and then started laughing. Three of my co-workers laughed with him, but I didn’t. I was boiling on the inside, but I was more confused then anything. You see, Hady lived most of his life in Europe, so he shouldn’t be thinking like this. I believe he was always kind of bigoted towards Coptic (Egyptian) christians, but he kept it under control for the most part. The problem started when he had decided that he was leading a sinful life and that he should be a better muslim, which somehow he aligned with the idea that he should be an enemy for anything that could possibly be against Islam. Given the kind of hate indoctrination they give you in some Islamic religious circles against “Christians and jews” and how they are infidels who don’t believe in Allah, Hady naturally felt that he was justified in his bigotry. I , naturally, wasn’t gonna let him of the hook that easily. So I simply asked him : “ why are you so afraid of them?” He replied : “ Huh? What are you talking about? Who am I afraid of?” I said: “ The Coptic Christians. Why are you so afraid of them? I mean, if you hate them so much it must be for a reason. It must mean you are afraid of them or something they do or represent.” I then took a dramatic pose and continued, “So what are you so afraid of Hady?” Hady, slightly offended, replied: “I am not afraid of no Christians. I am just stating the obvious. That’s what Islam would dictate us to do if we lived in a truly Islamic country”. To which I quickly replied: “ So what is Islam so afraid of?”, which drew a rabble of shock from people around us and immediately antagonized Hady : “Watch what you are saying. Islam is not afraid of them and neither are we”! “So why would you be so gleeful at the thought of them killed and slaughtered?” “Cause they are Kafarah “Infidels” and should not be allowed to practice their “Kofr” in this country!” Hady quickly snorted! “Kafarah Hady? But I thought they were people of the book. Doesn’t the Koran teach that they should be respected and not be harmed?” I said to him calmly, only to be replied by Reem, the only female coworker we have who happens to be veiled, with a resounding “No! That’s not true. Those are not considered People of the Book!” I was taken back and replied “excuse me? The Koran is clear Reem. Christians and jews. People of the Book. What the hell are you talking about?” “Well, the Koran said we should respect the real people of the book. Those don’t qualify cause everyone knows they altered their religious texts that god gave them. Not to mention, the Christians think Jesus is god, which makes them idolaters and infidels. The Christians we are supposed to respect are the ones who don’t think Jesus is god incarnate. Like the Unitarians!” Okay, you guys can just imagine the blood rising to my head and steam coming out of my nostrils at this point, right? That statement was so wrong and stupid on so many levels that I had to just give it to her. “ Reem, you really don’t know what you are talking about. There is no such thing as Historical Christians who didn’t believe in the divinity of Jesus. That’s actually what makes them Christians in the first place. If back then they thought Jesus was just a man, they would be Jews or non-Christians. As for the Unitarians, well, that’s a movement that started in the 18th’s century sweetheart and trust me, not a single MB member would agree with them on anything. But let’s ignore all this for a minute. Let’s speak of the real reason why you don’t like Coptic Christians: they have money and they take care of their own!” “That may be true, but why do you defend them anyway? You know that they hate you, right? They hate all of us. If they could kill us they would!” Reem yelled! “I am not sure that’s true Reem. But let’s put it this way, have we given them any reason to not hate us? They get treated like shit in this country!” I said. I was getting aggravated with this. “What are you talking about, treated like shit ?!” Waleed, our IT guy, jumped in. “They get everything they want. You know that Mosques and Zawayas (small mosques in regular buildings) can no longer be open all day, and only allowed to be open for 20 minutes before prayer and 15 minutes afterwards? They even have 2 policemen who will stop you from going in and could arrest you. They don’t have that in churches here. They have police cars there for protection. Not a single mosque in Egypt has police cars for protection, and you claim they have it bad?” I smiled and said “I didn’t know that the government did this but, well, look at the reasoning behind it and u would get it. They naturally don’t want the mosques open all day because then some young people who can’t find jobs and have no purpose will go and sit there all day to get closer to god and listen to the Imam. That’s the best recruitment atmosphere for terrorist groups. Some of them could be the imam and fill those kids up with ideas about jihad and committing terrorist acts against this “infidel country”. That’s what happened in the 1970’s , 80’s and 90’s. You only need like 5 people to commit a terrorist act. Any Zawya can fill up at least 50. That’s 10 different terrorist cells waiting to happen, and you telling me you don’t see why they do that?” “Yeah, I guess so!” Waleed said. The rest of the group seemed to be watching us now. “Ok then, let’s address your other point. Now explain to me, why would the government protect mosques? Who would dare attack mosques in Egypt? Nobody! So why would you need police there for protection? Now let’s talk about churches, if there was no police cars protecting them, what would happen?” Waleed smiled and said “We would carry beating sticks and destroy and loot the hell out of them! Ok, I see your point!” “ You know something Sam”, Hady said to me with a smile, “ when the Islamic revolution happens, and it will, they will cut your neck alongside those Christians you like to defend so much!” “ You know, if that ever happens, you will end up envying me, cause they would fuck this country up so badly for you and your children, that if you are living in it, and you will be, you will wish they had killed you alongside me!” I said to him smiling calmly and I secretly marveled on how Zen I was at that moment. He looked at me, shock his head and started chuckling. I expected that reaction! I know that my “youthful misguided opinions” amuse him highly. I get that a lot from people in the office, especially with Hady. But Alas, the discussion was over and no “harm was done” as far as he was concerned. He was wrong. This made me seriously think about all the Coptic Christians in Egypt and what they have to deal with. I figured I should do some research and post about it here, as a sequel to this post.


At 4/05/2005 07:47:00 PM, Blogger Tina said...

Sam, have I ever told you how much I like you? You are a really great human being.

At 4/05/2005 08:38:00 PM, Blogger R said...

Your discussion shows a lot of courage, maturity and intelligence. I rarely heard people bringing up the issue that courageously and clearly.

Yes.. You're right. There has been no "Unitarians" by the time of Islam. When Islam appeared, the Christians of Ghassan and Abyssina (Ethiopia) were rather Syrian and Coptic Orthodox Christians (till now, Ethiopians are the closest in faith and tradition to Egyptians).

Now... allow me to ask these questions:

1) How many of educated Egyptians are like "Hady" and how many of them are like "Reem" and "Waleed"?
2) Why did educated people become like that? What happened?
3) What's this new story about the "wealthy" Coptic millionaires? And the churches being more favored by gov't than mosques? Haven't they heard about the many churches being burnt and vandalized in the late 1980s (including one that was 2 streets behind my grandma's apartment).
Some Copts claim Christians are richer because the poor Christians do actually convert (or their grandparents did as they failed to survive in the old days with Jiziah)-this cannot be verified but sounds sadly funny.

Who is behind all this? That's an interesting question. Who goes over and over about the "wealth of Copts" and their bad reputation as "traitors and deal-breakers"?

Read for example:
هل للأقباط دور تاريخي
and the other stuff coming from al maqrezee center

At 4/05/2005 09:55:00 PM, Blogger THE FLYINGBOY said...

I am really happy that still some Muslims are defending the Coptic rights in Egypt, there is something going in Egypt I don't know what I discussed with a lot of my friends the future of Egypt and the coming elections and I was defending Hosni Mubarak all the way only because I am afraid of any MB member who can win this elections and destroy all Egypt, and this what makes Egypt behind other nations the deep hate in the hearts of her people towards others of different religion why and what is the purpose , I want to tell all your friends Christians are not taking their rights at all ask them how long it takes to build a church 15-20 years is the answer and I lived this situation in my mother's town, ask them how many minister is Coptic and did they ever heard about a Coptic who is defense minister or internal affair minister or a Prime minister except Boutros Ghali who was killed.
Tell them if any Christian can preach a Muslim to enter Christianity or what will happen to any Muslim who converts to Christianity. And for Christians will kill Muslims if they got the chance tell them look to the states and Europe and see how Muslims are treated there "no religion in the ID even to treat you badly" you have the total rights why only the Arab world religion is in the ID why we are insisting in involving the religion in our life why can't we separate religion from politics and the government. I am looking for a time that every political party that relates religion to politics like Muslims brothers or even if there was a Christian party that do the same will be banned and I think Pope Shanouda had declared it so openly no Religion with politics I hope all Muslims will see that the Coptic Christians are completely separating religion from politics and daily life . Religion is for God only

At 4/06/2005 03:24:00 AM, Anonymous Alaa said...

thanks for writing this.

why the drama, why where you thinking of not writing it?

yalla hope to be among the first against the wall when the revolution comes.

At 4/06/2005 06:29:00 AM, Blogger Ahmad said...

I am glad you wrote it. Please do not hesitate to write such stories and to stand up to people like Hady.

I recently wrote about Islam and it is astonishing how muslims like Hady have interpreted Islam the way they like and have no resepect for others; but its not only their fault, its also the Imam's fault, the education system and their common knowledge (or the lack of it).

At 4/06/2005 08:18:00 AM, Blogger Mohammed said...

Thanks for writing that SM....

At 4/06/2005 09:37:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Islam has a serious problem. Too many of the people who preach inside mosques and lead the flocks are expousing hatred and intolerance. The prophet warned of this and he fortold the consequences.

At 4/06/2005 09:44:00 AM, Blogger praktike said...

Good story. Thanks for trying to educate these people.

At 4/06/2005 10:34:00 AM, Blogger Nadz said...

terrific post and terrific arguments, sandmonkey. reminds me of arguments i had with others when i lived in the middle east, although i wasn't as brave as you were...

At 4/06/2005 02:54:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

SM...I am writing from the US.I own my own business with my spouse. We had just hired a young guy who had immigrated from Eqypt but was not yet a citizen when 9-11 occurred.

We didn't know what religion he was..we just assumed he was Muslim. In the US it is against the law to ask what religion someone is when interviewing them. Anyway, he told us that everyone was being really nice to him, making sure he was OK...offering to go places with him...inviting him to dinner.

He decided to go for citizenship because of it. We later found out he was a Copt who had left Egypt because of discrimination.

At 4/06/2005 03:18:00 PM, Anonymous doug in Colorado said...

Whichever God you worship has blessed you with wisdom and courage...

It takes a gret deal of courage to stand up to your enemies...but a great deal more to stand up to your friends.

At 4/06/2005 03:19:00 PM, Anonymous doug in Colorado said...

Whichever God you worship has blessed you with wisdom and courage...

It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies...but a great deal more to stand up to your friends.

At 4/06/2005 04:46:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are very brave, Sandmonkey, and honest too. Be careful.

At 4/07/2005 02:26:00 PM, Anonymous Howard said...

I think that as democracy spreads and is seen as a threat to Islam, the Imams are going to become more extreme not less.

At 4/07/2005 03:20:00 PM, Blogger ألِف said...

SandMonkey: I understand what you thought and felt and admire it. I have been having conversations like these for so many years now.
One thing: There were people who believed Jesus was a man. Remnants of them still exist today in the Levant. These are the people the Arabs came to contact with and came to know as Nasārā. There was also Gnostic currents in 'Christianity' that disappeared now. Christianity is an old religion that's gone through a lot. This is typical of religions; they constantly change, branch end evolve. Islam isn't an exception, it's just that most people don't get the chance to know other versions of their religion, not to mention any other's. History has a lot to teach us.
Most people like your opponents in your discussion above are typical of those who think what they know is the sole truth. Once you get them to start thinking you will witness a marvellous phenomenon: an intellect in motion.

At 4/15/2005 10:41:00 AM, Anonymous Samara said...

Well, as you can probably tell from my name, i'm new to the blog. I'm loving a lot of the topics out here, Sam, as well as your blunt honesty and courage to speak out about oppression and discimination.

I too am Egyptian, but grew up in the Gulf, but now live between The Netherlands and Canada. I occasionally visit Egypt, and when i do, i ALWAYS know that i'll be getting into some heated dabates (women's rights, coptic christians, islam, politics, education, etc.) with my Muslim family and friends over my unorthodox point of views.

I too have witnessed the same amount of hatred and discrimination against the Copts in the Egyptian society. This particular post hit home for me because one of my absolute best friends is a Coptic Christian.

I use to occasionally get a cringe from some family members whenever they heard my best friend's name, followed by: she's a nice girl, but only if she wasnt Christian...

When i was younger (and naive), i use to think: yeah, i know...but then it came to a point where i was like: WTF? so what? we believe in the same God, don't we? And doest the fact that although we were brought up different in terms of religions, but manage to realize we had so much in common (ethics, morals, attitudes, personalities..) say anything or mean anything?

My best friend and i would talk too. She'd tell me about how much harder it is for Copts to find jobs in Egypt, particulalry in Musilm dominant sectors. I was shocked at first, and i felt so bad, that i found myself apologizing to her on behalf of the Muslim community. She laughed, saying: Silly, it's not your fault!

Then on my yearly visits to Egypt, i started noticing a new trend (yes, veiled young girls was one): support your own kind mentality! That is, help Musilms in business by buying from them, and don't deal with Christians and help them benefit of off Muslim money. (Sounds a lot like the Afrocentric movemenet: support other Blacks by purchasing from Black businesses)

Its amazing how a four-letter word like HELL can transcend national, ethic and rational identity, to form a much stronger religious identity. Can't we all just clasify our selves as human beings?????

At 5/22/2005 06:40:00 AM, Anonymous Bassist Of The Fall said...

Thanks for posting this. There's something I've noticed in our society today, and that is the extreme lack of tolerance. Every time I hear the statement that Egyptians are friendly towards guests/foreigners, I have a sudden urge to protest. (This might not have much to do with the muslim/coptic conflict, but it's a parallel that I think should be mentioned)

Don't take me wrong. Maybe a lot of Egyptians treat foreigners/guests/whatever well, but do they always tolerate those who are different? The answer is no. Let me tell you a few examples:

Here are a few reasons why I became an outsider..
I lived in the UK till I was 3 years old, so English was the first language I learnt. When I came back to Egypt I had to learn Arabic, but I speak it with a very light accent beacuse I didn't learn it first. Everyone I get to meet comments about it. I'm not exaggerating, absolutely everyone. Loads of people even make fun of it. But that's not the real problem. I also have a different way of thinking than lots of Egyptians. Not regarding religion at this point, I just developed a different mentality. These aspects somehow turned me automatically into a serious outsider that should be ridiculed and mistreated by all means. Ironically, I find good treatment and respect from all my foreign friends (I'm at a German school with quite a lot of Germans)..

A girl I know who studies dental medicine in the Cairo University suffers a lot under the lack of tolerance and open-mindness among the Egyptian students. She told me about her encounters with some of her stiff-minded counterparts: On the first few days she was asked a sh*tload of times why she doesn't wear a veil. Her answer was: "I think that religion is a personal thing, so if I want to live without wearing a veil I should have the freedom to do so as long as I don't oppress your freedom to wear it.." I think she's still considered a heretic until now..

As you can see, you can't live here in this society with a different mentality without suffering from dire, dire consequences. I guess this applies to copts here too. Fortunately I haven't encountered any act of serious hate towards copts until now, but I can imagine what it might be like.

So the next time you hear the statement: "All Egyptians are friendly and tolerant", you should know that it's just an excuse to cover up the massive intolerance that's common in our society. I think it's all a matter of bringing up. If parents would teach their children to be good to other people and to respect different points of view or ways of thinking, I guess we won't have any problems of that sort..

Sorry for the slight digression by the way..

At 10/15/2005 08:32:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

You're a coureageous guy SAM! Really! It's really hard to swim against the current.

Thanks for doing the desperate job of enlightening bigots!

At 10/20/2005 03:38:00 PM, Blogger Freedom for Egyptians said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 10/28/2005 05:52:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Sam, Like your blog and this discussion very much. I'm am planning to teach in the miidle east, speciffically cairo at some stage, and learn arabic. I am middle class white person from new zealand. Was curious myself to understand the views of muslims towards other religions and intolerance. In my experience freinds who are from the middle east are usually very nice, but I do sense a certain disdain toward western culture from them. They are perhaps somewhat indoctrinnated in this way. ofcourse their children are really nothing like them and bond with their culture.
I find all the indian and pakistani muslims, or people of that descent, very welcoming and they genuinely like (anglo) western culture and people.
However, of discussions i have had with middle eastern immigrants and such like, people of the BOOK have a hell of a lot in common, I mean there are alot of simmmilarites, which probably have alot to do with historical culture clash, etc, good and bad. Its funnny because there being alot of chinese people in my country I m often absolutely amazed how little they see eye to eye with other cultures. I have read and studied budhism and far eastern culture, lived with chinese people, but still dont really understand them, nor they me. Ironic that cultures which have alot incommon should be so set against each other (the people of the book including jews). Sadly its all comes down to religion and history in the end.

At 1/11/2006 03:36:00 PM, Blogger deoda2006 said...

dear sandmonkey i think egypt need to separate religion from everything.need to know that work is holy &our religions not need for our defence.everbody are free to think &follow any religion he find himself in.realy u touch very sensitive subject&thats good

At 2/09/2006 06:43:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sandmonkey, you are brave and wonderful man, and you are doing the work of many in advancing civilized thinking. I admire you.

As US person, I'm working with people of many religions, and you are right, you dont touch on that at work. It's interesting that many of the middle eastern immigrants here in US are Christian (eg I know Lebanese, Egyptians, etc.) and I only came to know this after some time (working with them) in some cases, but understand now better why they are here. Muslim intolerance and discrimination is a factor. Mid-east's loss is America's gain.

The statement about belief in Jesus as just a a man being common prior to Unitarians is misplaced; there was a body of thought called Arianism, but was not common in Eastern Church (Byzantium, now Greek Orthodox). It has nothing to do with Nasara or Gnostic beliefs; Coptic Church is most ancient of orthodox sects, but key is 'orthodox'. It is correct to say that the definition of a Christian (orthodox, Catholic, or Protestant) is belief in deity of Jesus Christ. Anyone, even non-Christian, can admire Jesus' ethical philosophy, just read the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew Chapter 5 & 6).

Muslims seem to be the only religion that make a big deal about other religions. Some kind of inferiority complex in comparing with Jews and Christians? How can they reconcile the fact that Jesus/Issa was 2nd greatest prophet with all this talk of killing Kafrs?
Indeed, I'd be curious to ask Sandmonkey's friends if the Sermon on the Mount was part of the 'corruption' they claim exists in The Book and if so, which was good and which was corrupt. So Jesus was a great prophet but everything he said was lies? Especially that 'turn the other cheek' and 'love your neighbor' stuff that is apparently very un-Islamic? (Am I being sarcastic enough) That would be an interesting discussion!

And this begs another question: All of Egypt was once Christian, since it flourished for about 500 years prior to Arab invasion and introduction of Islam replacing Byzantine Empire (around 700AD).

Do the Egyptian schools teach or explain of that heritage? Do your friend think about how their own ancestors were Christian?
Or that these Christians that they dont like are distant relatives?

At 2/17/2006 12:03:00 PM, Blogger marin_explorer said...

I'm saddened by this story, because all this hate, prejudice, and destructiveness could be avoided if people simply learned a little more about those "infidels". Who is my enemy? My own fear and ignorance. This happens everywhere.

As for that apparent contradiction of educated people holding extremist views: I also see this in America where Christian fundamentalists can be functional at their jobs, but very dysfunctional on a social/intellectual level. In a way, they inhabit another parallel universe, seeing the world through a veil of misinformation.

At 2/20/2006 04:59:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Um, hi
Hehe, well I live in Egypt, and yes such conversations do happen. yet, since Sandmonkey's kinda a talented writer, it shows so dramatic through his words. I loved'em though *giggles*. from my point of view, I don't think there will be any kind of Islamic revolution, though the total population is kinda addicted to religion as you put it. it's because people here used to talk alot, you know? to relieve the pressure. so, nope, the people here will not accept an Islamic rule like that of Taliban*giggles* they are wiser than that.
as for Mr. Hady and his likes, matter of fact they do exist. And they represent the failure of the educational system in here. fundamintalists are everywhere though. And it's a vicious circle who started the hatred thingie. the Copts' problems in Egypt are way too serious issue, it can't be solved through fake dinner parties where the Azhar's and the Church's heads meet.
p.s. those who talk about Jiziah, they might wanna do some more readings, Jiziah was estimated to be less than 25% of the Zakaat paid by muslims, AND if the ketabee couldn't afford it, they didn't have to. matter of fact there has been a long time when Christians and Jews used to have financial aids through the Islamic estate. read your history gentlemen, it might be useful someday.

At 2/20/2006 05:04:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, and yes Egyptian schools teach extinsively that period where Egypt used to be under the Byzantine Empire rule, with all the art, literature, and cultural development. ofcourse along side with all the corruption that existed. yet the education system still way too fucked up to graduate students aware of their own curricula even.:(

At 3/01/2006 05:50:00 PM, Blogger maged salamah said...

Dear Sandmonkey. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am Coptic American and will return to Egypt. I will fight the likes of Hady and Reem. The problem is that there are 15 million Copts in Egypt who decided not to take shit any more. Hady and friends talked about killing Christians as if they will not be faced by resistance. I do not think Bush will help us but we will help ourselves. We are fed up of our priests who turned us ino helpless wimps and we will fight begad. Please check my blog. www.democraticegypt.blogspot.com

At 3/23/2006 09:26:00 PM, Blogger forsoothsayer said...

the problem with all this is unfortunately verses 29-30 of surat el tawbah. i'm afriad it makes it quite clear that christians and jews are to be killed. i myself had always scoffed at christians who believed this and called them paranoid, but it's there in clear black and white and can't be interpreted any other way. so no wonder.

At 4/17/2006 02:56:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please be careful Sandmonkey.

I read your Blog regularly, and I see a lot of workplace references. Maybe one of your coworkers will recognise you, or you give enough information for a pinpoint.

You will be worth nothing to the world locked up in some prison. Play their game and report to the world. Keep a low profile and a sharp pen.

A fan of democracy.

At 5/13/2006 12:21:00 PM, Anonymous Wacky said...

Im not sure what kind of people you are talking to but if they had an ounce of knowledge they wouldnt have said what you claim.

Christians today *ARE* People of The Book. And it doesn't matter if they are People of The Book or NOT, under Islamic rule, they all must be protected.

Anyone who says they must be killed need to get an education and read their scripture and history.

You cannot kill someone because they beleive different from you. How stupid. Tell Waleed or reem or whatever other names you have that non Muslim rights must be protected under Islamic law.

How do they think Islam ruled Spain for over 800 years? There were many Golden Years for Jews and Christians then so saying Islam orders non Muslims to be killed is an insult to the faith.

At 7/26/2006 11:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dearest sandmonkey,

thankyou for stating the truth on this matter- hat off to you. As an egyptian christian i respect you for standing up for going against the majority and possibly putting yourself at risk- not easy.

However, sm your friends are right. They are merely following the quran. Does it not say: "elyahood wa el nasara akbar a3da2 el islam?" What do you generally do to your enemies? in the bible it says love them, but in the Quran?

I am sad to say that according to the Quran your friends are right and you are wrong.

At 2/19/2007 12:52:00 AM, Blogger Shuv said...

Good man! as a jew i have the same problems convincing my father regarding muslims. Stalinism does terrbile things to people, teaches you how to hate.


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