Tourism and Terrorism, a Risky Business
Articles, acts and endeavours to curry favour for the mere sake of
attracting tourists and pleasing the inquisitive reader, are like a
fading smile. They may be pleasing for a while, but are soon
forgotten. Undue flattery is a lie; like a sugarcoated bitter pill;
in the end it leaves the subject matter unresolved, leaving the
recipient with an unsavoury taste and unpleasant memory. The media,
in general, do not touch on the harsh treatment of the indigenous
natives living under Islamic rule. They tone down growing internal
conflicts between militants and the government and the continuous
attacks on Christian ethnic groups in Iraq, Turkey, Egypt, Sudan,
Algeria, Nigeria and Indonesia. The tourist's desire is to spend a
few weeks in relaxation, visiting interesting places and historical
sites at his own casual pace away from the humdrum life of his home.
He is unconcerned about what goes on locally around him. He
continues his tour, beaming with revered admiration of the sites,
pleased that he has taken this tour and convinced it has been worth
it. Yet, unfortunately, some fall victim to terrorism. They are
either killed or kidnapped. Their pleasant holiday turns into a
nightmare for them and their families. It is not surprising that
such atrocities are committed by Islamic militants under the guise
of (jihad) holy war. The mujahideen holy warriors specifically
target Western foreigners, Christians and Jews. The motive is both
religious and political.
Islamic governments cannot disband the mujahideen groups or dismiss
them as terrorists, unless the mujahideen themselves turn against
their own Islamic governments and confront them. Jihad (the struggle
in the name of Allah) is officially indoctrinated in the Islamic
religion. It is officially recognized and revered to most Muslims.
Muslims consider Jihad as another pillar of Islam. Jihad cannot be
constitutionally repealed. It is un-Islamic and an act of apostasy
to even dare touch on such a highly revered subject. The West calls
such groups terrorists. Islam hails them as holy warriors to defend,
spread and maintain its religion. In short, mujahideen target
foreigners. Militias control ethnic communities. Al-Muta-we-ah
disciplines both, Muslim and non-Muslim expatriates that violate the
Islamic (shari’ah) law. The media seldom, if at all, discuss such
issues. Instead, they blame migration of the Christian natives
(Armenians, Assyrians, Copts, Maronites and Timorese) from their
countries, on the Christians themselves rather than the harsh and
inequitable conditions the Muslim rule imposes on them (Pryce-Jones,
1989: pp 6-10).
Under the guise of tolerance, the media, in both Islamic and
non-Islamic countries, claim that Christians, in Islamic countries,
exercise their full right of freedom of worship, of self-expression
and of equal employment opportunity, as any other Muslim citizen.
They also claim that Islamic governments recognise the natural
rights of the non-Muslim natives under full protection of the
Islamic Shari’ah Law. (Hiro, 1989: p178).
They go further still and claim that intermarriage in Islamic
countries is allowed. Such statements are baseless, misleading and
untrue (Stump, Keith W., 1983: pp 5, 43). Association and marriage
between Muslims and Christians or Muslims and Jews is forbidden. A
Muslim man may marry a non-Muslim woman after he converts her to
Islam. But a Muslim woman is legally prohibited by the Islamic (shari’ah)
law to marry a non-Muslim (Pryce-Jones: pp 125-126).
As much as a South African black man under apartheid could marry a
South Afrikaner white woman, live and survive in a South African
white community, so can a Christian man in the Middle East marry a
Muslim woman and stay alive. In South Africa, discrimination was
based on racism. In Islam, it is based on religion. A Christian is
not allowed to marry a Muslim woman and retain his Christian faith.
He should first convert to Islam. It is against the Islamic shari’ah
law for a Muslim woman to enter into marriage with a non-Muslim. It
is taboo. It is sacrilegious. It is an act of apostasy. It is
outlawed and punishable by death (Kharroufah, 1991: pp7, 25, 35;
Pryce-Jones: pp 125-126). Honour killing is still prevalent.
For a non-Muslim person to marry a Muslim woman he has to convert to
Islam and fulfil certain Islamic rituals first. He must:
publicly, and in the presence of the Mulla cleric and two Muslim
male witnesses, the (Shahada) - testimony in full: (LA ILAHA ILLA
LLAH, MUHAMMAD RASOUL ALLAH) - that there is no god but Allah and
Muhammad is his messenger. By doing so he renounces his former
religion and embraces the new faith - Islam.
his name to a Muslim one, or one that the Mulla nominates.
prayer calls, Ramadhan (Muslim month of fasting), Muslim feasts and
attend Friday prayer at the mosque of his vicinity.
under surveillance for three consecutive years, and thereafter be
accepted as a true believer, entitled to go to Hajj - pilgrimage to
himself away from the past and be absorbed into the mystical Islamic
crucible melting pot.
himself from past associates by wearing, on special occasions, a
long robe - (Dish-da-sha) - a mark of being tamed into Islam
(Pryce-Jones, 1989: pp 125, 126; Hiro, 1989: pp 10-11).