This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

23 Oct, '03

Nancy Ajram performing in BahrainIslamist MPs Adel Al-Moawada, Mohammed Khaled Mohammed, Ali Matar, Abdulla Al-A’ali, and Hamad Al-Muhannadi tabled an urgent motion in the Bahraini Parliament to ban the Lebanese singer Nancy Ajram from performing in Bahrain citing her act as provocative, indecent and debaucherous.

The motion was squarely defeated with most members including the chairman describing the motion as frivolous. In a democratic country, this should have been the end of the story. However, because of these MPs’ own agenda, the issue did not rest but transpired by their (passive or active) encouragement, a gang of their followers violently demonstrated at the venue last night resulting in several injuries to innocent people and property, burnt rubber tires, and set fire to a traffic light. They were clashes between these gangs and the public security who in turn used tear gas to try to disperse them.

This is clearly a precursor of the future of Bahrain. That is, if these Islamists don’t get their way democratically, they will resort to inciting simple fools to violence.

The end result? Bahrain is not a place worth investing in nor is it a place to bring your family to enjoy a peaceful time. You and your family are at the mercy of these extremists.

These so called Islamists miss the main point of democracy: “your freedom ends where another person’s freedom begins”.

The concert went ahead despite the violence, albeit with more than half of the audience forced away.

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  1. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    All credit to Nancy Ajram, Bahrain’s parliament and Al-Hamer for standing up to the hysterical tactics of the Islamists MP in parliament and the Islamist Brown Shirts outside her concert. Bahrain’s parliament has come in for some flak, but the majority of MPs distinguished themselves by dismissing the Islamists’ motion to ban her concert as “silly”. An excellent description and its great to see MPs actually promoting freedom, rather than as on other recent occasions trying to restrict it.

    A couple of weeks back the King made clear that if you incite violence you will be held responsible, and I hope that the authorities immediately begin work on a new prison to house all those involved in this episode for the next two to three years.

  2. mahmood says:

    Re: This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    I agree with your sentiments, however I respectfully disagree with putting these people in prison, as that might create living martyrs out of them, they don’t deserve that. Something more pertinent should be done to and for the society at large to educate them as to the limits of personal freedoms.

    At the moment if you visit any of the tens of so called internet forums you will read an overwhelming number of posts vilifying the government, pro-banning, and generally want to take us as a people back to circa 673 AD.

    The question has to be asked: why? Why are these people so closed minded and more importantly want to force their views on us, the (not so silent) majority?

    Why do they insist on putting legislation to restrict our personal freedoms in the name of Islam? It is evidently clear that doing so just does not work, all they have to do is look at Afghanistan which was ruled by the Taliban and their Al-Qaeda bossom buddies and see what they got up to in restricting just about everything the modern world has given us and what their fate ended as.

    So they want to ban Nancy Ajram today, what’s coming up next? Ban televisions, videos, DVDs and any other form of entertainment as they are “morally corrupting our youth?” Do these youths really need their advice?

    A 4 year old could tell you what’s right and wrong, so why force their version of black and white on adults?

    My personal opinion is we should work very hard at completely separating politics and religion. We should turn Bahrain into a secular country so that these few backward people don’t hold the country as a whole from progressing into the future.

  3. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. I’m Christian not Muslim

    Christians have “Christian liberty.” This means that each person is free to do, say, enjoy that which does not constitute/make him sin. Islam needs a healthy dose of Christian liberty.

  4. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    salut ca va je suis dounia du maroc je vous aimes tros

  5. mahmood says:

    Re: This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    Je t’aime trop Dounia, merci beaucoup de votre visite.

  6. mahmood says:

    Ajram riot verdict

    from the GDN

    A number of people accused of committing acts of violence in a bid to halt the concert given at the Bahrain International Exhibition Centre by Lebanese singer Nancy Ajram in October 2003 have been cleared by the High Criminal Court. In its verdict, the court said most of the rioters had been masked and it was therefore difficult to identify them.

    GDN – Jan 9th, 2005

  7. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    yes it’s not in islam .are you muslimen .no.no.on critian

  8. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    all the arab world is changing for the worst. right now, it’s all up to our government to change things.

  9. mahmood says:

    Re: This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    What’s governments got to do with it? They have all demonstrated their utter incompetance in any emotive and practical issue so far, what makes you think that they will now fair any better?

    No, government won’t do jack to curb the rise of the extremists. When people change their thinking of superiority we will get somewhere.

    I would never have thought that Oman for instance would have a problem with terrorists or even just civil unrest, but I am wrong. If a government is not of the people and for the poeple, we will continue to get insurgents in all of our countries, not just Saudi, Kuwait and Oman.

    This from the GDN this morning:

    Oman arrests 300 and seizes arms

    DUBAI: Omani police have arrested more than 300 suspects, a number of them Islamists, who were planning attacks in the sultanate, where a cargo of arms was also seized.

    Citing “information” and “rumours” circulating in Oman, Al-Hayat newspaper said that “social and military officials” were known to be among “some 300 people arrested … last week”.

    Arms were discovered when a truck transporting them had an accident, “which led to (the dismantling) of the group,” it said.

    It also said there were “rumours of explosions on the first day of Eid Al Adha”. Those arrested planned “explosions targeting the Muscat Festival”, which opened on January 21 and continues until February 18.

  10. [deleted]0.95776700 1099323586.392 says:

    Re: Are Arabs racist people?

    Arabs have raided Africa for black slaves for hundreds of years, and still do. That sounds fairly racist to me. As I understand it, the perjorative term for black people in Arabic means “slave.” That sounds racist to me.

    The code word Al Qaeda used for Americans in their communications with each other is “white meat,” equating white Americans with pigs. That sounds racist to me.

    The official name of Egypt is the United Arab Republic. That sounds racist to me. How do you think it would fly if America did the equivalent of Egypt and named itself the United Caucasian States?

    Steve

    [Modified by: Steve The American (Steve) on April 18, 2005 08:16 AM]

  11. mahmood says:

    Re(1): Are Arabs racist people?

    I’ll declare it a national holiday in Mtv land when Steve has something nice to say about us, or at least tone down his rhetoric enough and does not generalise. I have a feeling that we will have to wait for a very long time to wait for that holiday.

    I’m glad that the majority of Americans – even one person whom I know who was in the World Trade Centre on that fateful day – does not share Steve’s view of the Arabs, the Arab world or the Muslim world for that matter. And that is from a survivor!

    Steve, who picked the cotton in your country in the not too distant past? White meat could also be chicken! and “Arab” is not a race, hence its use in United ARab Republic, or United Arab Emirates cannot be racist.

  12. anonymous says:

    Are Arabs racist people?

    Though this question may sound stupid to some i wanted to know if it is true in certain places and what are peoples views on this question. ARE ARABS RACIST? Though racism exists throughout the world is it normal for an Arab to dislike blacks as well as whites? Why would an Arab be racist towards a black person? Do they feel that they are above blacks and that they are somehow better than them or is this simply not the case? Does it state in the Quran that Arab Muslims must be tolerant of all people and races as well.?

    ———————–Just wondering what everyone thought of this situation————————-

  13. mahmood says:

    Re: Are Arabs racist people?

    There are two things that perpetuate racism in Arab culture: ignorance and the absence of laws that punish blatant racism. Notice I said “culture” there, because in Islam there is absolutely no such thing. Islam released slaves from slavery 14 centuries ago. Its first caller to prayer (mo’athen) was Bilal, a black whom the prophet released from slavery and Islam teaches us that we are all creatures of Allah and the only difference between us in the eyes of Allah are our good intentions and piety.

    I personally believe that every single human being is raised with some sort of prejudice and racism. It is the culture they live in that corrects this nature. In Bahrain, the government is finally signing the two main human rights UN treaties which should automatically enact and produce new laws against racism. That is a great way forward.

    Short answer, this is a catch 22 question which could be posed with the same result to ANY culture or society.

    But my answer is: generally, the Arabs are not racist. Simply by their position geographically as the defacto trade routes throughtout history, they have been cross polinated or at least exposed to various civilisations which should make them a lot more cosmopolitan than many other societies.

  14. [deleted]0.95776700 1099323586.392 says:

    Re(2): Are Arabs racist people?

    Mahmood,

    OK, you have educated me on the term Arab. I accept that it is not a racial term, now that I have looked it up with your prompting. While I disagree that any country should be formally based on a culture or ethnic group, that is another topic.

    African slaves picked the cotton in the US, to accept your question. It is to America’s discredit that slavery should ever have existed in contradiction to our principles of life, liberty, and freedom. It was racist and wrong. It is to America’s credit that we corrected this crime. And with considerable bloodshed to make it right.

    It is disengenuous to claim “white meat” could be chicken. It’s pretty obvious to the casual observer what it means.

    As for the Arab/Muslim world, I see it as a very dysfunctional place, a swamp of prejudice and poverty caused by culture and religion with only a few islands of normality. I admit that Sep 11 has poisoned my view, along with the following years of revelations of mindless hate in the Middle East for America . I am not inclined to ignore faults as I might have been on Sep 10, but to highlight them.

    Steve

  15. mahmood says:

    Re(3): Are Arabs racist people?

    Steve, I accept your apology. White meat to me personally has ALWAYS been chicken! I never considered swine to be white, as I’m sure many of my Muslim bretheren much as the taste might be likable.

    I completely agree with you as to the disfunctionality of the Arab/Muslim world, but that is off topic, however I would dearly like to see it rectified one way or another, and I’m not averse to having that rectification imposed rather than evolved.

  16. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Are Arabs racist people?

    A quick “google” shows me that there seem to be about equal numbers of references to “white meat” referring to fowl such as chicken and turkey, as there are to those referring to pork.

    BUT it seems that many of those references to pork are due to a fairly [i]recent[/i] advertising campaign for pork as “the [i]other[/i] white meat” [italics mine].

    Further, of the many Arabs I have met and known, many have been quite white-skinned – particularly those who do not spend hours under the rays of the sun, and especially women who work indoors.

    Finally, one may be [i]bigoted[/i] about people with a different skin colour, but since skin colour is not directly linked to any particular “race”, it is illogical that this by itself could cause one to be credited as “racist”. [NOTE: Many scholars consider that “race” is a misnomer anyway]

    Ya’akov Yehudi

  17. anonymous says:

    Re: Are Arabs racist people?

    I’ve never really noticed in general Arabs being racist about black people but I have CERTAINLY noticed racism towards Indians and Filipinos. But it is as if it is an approved racism. Open racism in the UK is illegal and you can get into trouble for blatant racism. I always found racism in Bahrain is a “who cares” situation.

  18. mahmood says:

    Re(4): Are Arabs racist people?

    I hear you! As dysfunctional as we are, we are still family, and that’s the good part…

  19. princess_nora says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    Hi everyone,

    This is the first time I ever post anything on this website. I just read this chain of messages, and it’s nearly 6 am where I am now. But I don’t think I can go to bed now, before writing a few words…

    Arabs and racism are two words that always seem to come together in a standard package nowadays, mainly because of the images that extremists portray of us – under the name of “Islam�, plus, the propaganda of the western media.

    I can’t claim that all Arabs are not racist, just like there are racists in all parts of the world, there are racists in the Middle East too. I’m sure every society has some aspects of racism (sadly). Now the number of racists in the Arab world must seem larger than it really is, in the eyes of non-Arabs, but (excuse me for saying this) that’s only because they don’t know any better.

    To answer the questions above: “Why would an Arab be racist towards a black person? Do they feel that they are above blacks and that they are somehow better than them or is this simply not the case? Does it state in the Quran that Arab Muslims must be tolerant of all people and races as well.?�.
    My answer is simply that the Quran stated that there is NO difference whatsover between people of different skin colors or race, and that it is forbidden to discriminate against or merely make fun of any person based on his skin color, his social class, or his race. The Quran goes on to say that everyone is equal in the eyes of God (which doesn’t give any of us the right to discriminate against others), because all humans are made out of sand and will go back to that sand once they are burried…. The only ground of differentiation between an individual and another is the amount of “good� or “bad� they have done in their life time. Also, the Quran states that Muslims should respect others’ beliefs, and allow them to practice their sacred beliefs in peace, particularly, those who live in Muslim countries. They should NOT be discriminated against, based on religious grounds.
    Arabs come in different colors, my mother is very fair and my father is a bit darker, but I would say that the majority of Middle-Easterns are rather dark. So I don’t really see why they would want to “practice� racism against themselves, to be honest?! However, if they choose to, which rarely happens – based on my observations – then they are disrespecting God’s words, plus, they probably suffer from some “issues�.

    Now, what’s all this fuss about Al Qaeda’s use of “white meatâ€?to describe Americans and – as some interpreted – equating them with pigs? Yes, Al Qaeda are racist, they are extremists, and they perforom hideous acts under the name of Islam. What’s new about that? They certainly do not, and should not be seen as a “representative sampleâ€? of Arabs or Muslims in general. The mere fact that they actually said “white meatâ€? to describe Americans is considered against Islam, whether they were referring to skin color or chicken or pigs, or whatever.

    Regarding slavery, one of the first issues that Islam dealt with was banning slavery. Since I was 5 years old, I was taught that slavery is just wrong, we were born free, and thus, we should live free. You are right, Steve, America committed the crime of slavery and corrected it too, with people’s lives being the cost. Anyway, it’s history isn’t it? And America is a democratic, peacful country, based on liberty and freedom… but noting previous events, and the recent war in Iraq, I guess one of America’s principles is also :“The ends justify the means�, i.e. it doesn’t matter how many lives get wasted, as long as we “promote democracy� in the end, right?
    Maybe America has beautiful principles, but the way it is trying to implement them is certainly not.

    I believe that the Arab world definitely needs a new strategy of reform to build its systems and shake off all the extremists that are misleading and corrupting our society. This is a time consuming strategy, radical change always takes time, but I’d rather wait for centuries, than to see these changes being “implemented by force�.

    I think I can go to bed now.

  20. mahmood says:

    Re(2): Are Arabs racist people?

    Hi Ya’akov, thanks for the explanation and the research through google, I haven’t done that, but based my answer on my own observation. As to colour of skin, you’re right again, we have all shades who are Bahraini, as I’m sure is the case with any other country on earth now. By the same token, there is no longer anything as a “pure” race with all the intermarriages happening, we’ve become just on giant happy family!

  21. anonymous says:

    Re(3): Are Arabs racist people?

    [quote]By the same token, there is no longer anything as a “pure” race with all the intermarriages happening, we’ve become just on giant happy family![/quote]

    Should be: just on giant [i]crazy and dysfunctional[/i] family! 😀

  22. anonymous says:

    Re: This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    what the arab world changing to the worsem it is changing becuase to thw worse becasue uit is becoming more conservative so stop saying things that has nomeaning and let us live and have fun and becasue of the islam all the bad things is happening now and islam is the reason of the weakness of the middle east

  23. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    slt ca va bien je t’aime beocoup bisou

  24. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    hiiii nancy ajram ana ba7ebek

  25. anonymous says:

    This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    I have been critical of Islam. Very critical. I do follow news in Muslim countries, specially the Arab ones. I also read about a dozen blogs by Muslims (not necessarily Islamic blogs….) regularly.

    It is because of this blog, and Mahmood (and may I add others like Big Pharaoh and the Religious Policeman, just to name two of many) that I intend to right a page in praise of those Muslims who are not afraid to speak out and say what needs to be said.

    This kaffir would like to say ‘thank you’ to Mahmood. Keep up the good work. Be safe!

    John aka Kactuz

  26. anonymous says:

    Re(1): Are Arabs racist people?

    re there black people in Bahrain?. If, what persentage of the population is black. I have heard from many Africans that Arabs are very racist, and that they hated black people and I always w.anted to know how true such statements are

  27. mahmood says:

    Re(2): Are Arabs racist people?

    We’ve got all colours of the rainbow in Bahrain! Can’t give you numbers though…

  28. anonymous says:

    Re: This is not my Bahrain. This is not my Islam.

    [quote] And America is a democratic, peaceful country, based on liberty and freedom… but noting previous events, and the recent war in Iraq, I guess one of America’s principles is also :“The ends justify the means�, i.e. it doesn’t matter how many lives get wasted, as long as we “promote democracy� in the end, right? [/quote]

    Hi Nora,
    I agree with all you said except that it is only correct to say that president Bush and his hawks are the ones believing that “the ends justifies the means”, not Americans as a whole. Many Americans aren’t fooled by this. I for one don’t believe this philosophy, and I don’t support Bush nor his rationale.

    I do favor promoting democracy peacefully, but not imposing it (very hard to do).

  29. mmmmmmmm says:

    no one can say thats adel almawda isn’t right he is the best man in bahrain

  30. M.H.Debess says:

    The pure well
    A new book which highlights the defects of both Sunni and Shi’a parties . It paves the way for Islamic democracy which is different from western democracy to be the milestone for the new Islamic emergence . Published by Trafford .
    http://www.trafford.com/06-0081
    A unique book not preceded in the history of Islam .

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