Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Today is a day like no other. It is a day that I will be in mourning. To be quite honest, I don’t know how to express the grief and pain that I feel today. Anyway, here it is in a nutshell: We have mithai in the house and I am on a diet … so I cannot eat it. Dammit! I know the nation feels my pain. Let us all bow our heads for a moment of silence…
Posted in completely useless drivel, food, general, Humor, I am a loser!, National Security, politics, War on Terror | 7 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, September 10, 2007
Authorities in Israel recently arrested this group for involvement in a number of crimes as well as membership in a Neo-Nazi group. Oh the irony of it all. Besides having Neo-Nazis to contend with…I found it particularly amusing that these guys got to Israel through the “law of return” which enables just about ANYONE (it seems) with even remote Jewish ancestry to legally reside in Israel. I suppose importing Russian Jews in droves kinda came back to bite ’em in the latka this time…
Posted in Colonialism, completely useless drivel, gangs, general, Human Rights, In The News, iNteresting, makes me think, occupation, Palestine, what the....?! | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Saturday, September 8, 2007
A historical look at the intersection between mental instability and true religious fanaticism. Ivan Vasilyevich IV, or “Ivan the Terrible” as he later came to be known, plunged Russia into one of its darkest periods in history. Ivan IV gained notoriety, and infamy, for being Russia’s first Czar (Tsar) as well as one of the most brutal rulers in its history. Ivan’s cruelty toward his enemies, and his own people, almost seems something of legend. After all, history is indeed full of countless dictators and ruthless leaders.
However, Ivan the Terrible’s “iron fisted” rule seemed to take tyranny and human savagery to rarely (before) seen depths in early modern times. With disturbing precision, Ivan personally oversaw the torture and execution of tens of thousands of Russians that he percieved as his enemies. Ivan’s bloodthirstiness only grew with each day of his nightmarish reign and the executions he participated in turned more and more into sadistic orgies of violence, torture and brutal inhumanity. Ivan’s “purges” of Russia were cruel, yet calculated, and were designed to instill the utmost level of fear into his subjects. Enemies weren’t simply slated for execution by the Czar…but they were to be tortured and so violated that Ivan would forever be regarded as something more than a mere despot or iron fisted ruler. Ivan would ultimately be regarded — by many of his terrified subjects & political rivals — as the bringer of death for 16th century Russia.
His enemies, which included an enormous list of nearly every cross section of 16th century Russia, were eliminated in some of the most horrendous ways. Ivan’s tortures seemed to be rooted in his obsessive reading of the Bible. One might even argue that, in a strange way, his Biblical tortures were an affront to the very religion he claimed devout adherence to. In that sense, Ivan the Terrible’s awful reign presents us with a number of contradictions. What is certain though is that Russia was never to be the same after the death of Ivan Vasilyevich IV.
A few thoughts I was left with after watching these videos:
1. Ivan the Terrible comes across as more than histories “usual” despot. Rather he seems more like what we might describe today as a serial killer. Only this serial killer had the legitimacy of political rule.
2. Ivan’s seige of Kazan marks one of Russia’s earliest campaigns against Muslims. I could be wrong here.. and I probably am. However, I am correct in stating that Ivan IV was the first Czar to have ever fought against Muslims in any territory.
3. The striking similarities of Ivan’s reign compared with the brutal grip on power held by the Communists during the Cold War. While there are similarities that I will briefly mention in a moment…there is at least one basic difference (I think). Ivan IV’s reign of terror over his subjects reflected, to some degree, his sadistic personal desires. Ivan, after all, was known to not only have personally participated in the gruesome torture and execution of his victims — but he was known to take pleasure and delight out of it as well. The Communists on the other hand, though equally as ruthless and brutal as Ivan, saw executions as something more political and routine in nature. Theirs was a job that involved the elimination/extermination of any, and all, enemies of the state as part of a national duty (or broader national strategy) and not necessarily as part of any personal agenda (this may be a point of contention for some who will raise the spector of Joseph Stalin whose paranoia and ruthlessness seems to have rivaled that of Ivan). Communists’s saw their role in forever silencing all opposition as part of a noble goal — the establishment of a utopian Socialist society in Russia (formerly USSR) and beyond. ANYWAY…I could ramble on…here are the possible similarities:
a. The employment of a secret force to eliminate political opposition…
b. The use of “purges” to eliminate any, and all, opposition…
c. Paranoid leadership…
d. “Iron fisted” rule…
Ivan the Terrible – Part 1
Ivan the Terribe – Part 2
Ivan the Terrible – Part 3
Posted in completely useless drivel, cults, dictator, Europe, history, iNteresting, makes me think, politics, Realpolitik, religion, strange, what the....?! | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, September 4, 2007
Have you ever wanted to find answers to some of the most important questions confronting mankind? Do you ever wonder what you’re life means in the grand cosmic scheme of things? Have you ever pondered the meaning of life itself? Have you ever been visited by Extraterrestrial beings? Is George W. Bush really that stupid? Is the the purple Teletubby (Tinky Winky) really gay?
Well…you won’t be finding answers to those questions (I think). However, you will find answers for questions related to Ramadan and other key Islamic topics. Actually, I’m not so sure about the whole “gay Teletubby” thing. Who knows, there might be a conclusion on that as well…
Anyway, do yourself a favor and check it out — if you haven’t already done so. Real Islamic scholars (Sh. Yasir Qadhi and Sh. Yaser Birjas) will be taking YOUR questions so feel free to give it to ’em … Full-Force!
Posted in culture, Daw'ah, Fiqh, general, iNteresting, Islam, Muslims, Quran, religion, Religious matters, Sunnah | 4 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, September 3, 2007
It seems that (C)rap music is taking Morocco over by storm. Great. Just what the world needed…Moroccan rappers. Maybe they can rap about kabobs and shawarma — with an occasional riff (no pun intended) thrown in about Palestine or something. I wonder if Akon is going to be on DJ Shawarma’s first album?
Posted in Africa, boy bands, completely useless drivel, culture, Fiqh, general, haram, makes me think, music, Muslims, what the....?! | 2 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Sunday, September 2, 2007
Saturday’s resignation of Senator Larry Craig highlights what has loomed over the GOP for quite some time now…Hypocrisy. The “H” word almost seems to be a running theme amongst conservatives with the most recent controversy surrounding Larry Craig. To be fair though, both sides of the isle have had their fair share of – shall we say – unsavory moments. Think back to Rep. William Jefferson who the FBI discovered had $90,000 stashed away in his freezer. You know, for those “rainy days” when a Congressman simply wants to splurge on a new tie or leather briefcase. Or think about the Kennedy’s for a moment — a political family known for having skeletons in the closet. So, while such contraversy is not necessarily limited to one political party … it just seems so much more fun to point it out among Republicans.
Unfortunate for them, Republicans have had (and continue to have in some cases) a somewhat unique tendency to constantly bark about everything from “family values” to “weapons of mass destruction”… the problem is that they can’t help but fail on such issues when all of the political dust settles and the lies are exposed. Larry Craig, having reluctantly resigned from the Senate, now belongs to a new fraternity of brothers whose members include the likes of Tom Delay, Mark Foley (who was even later avoided by Scientologists if you can believe that), Alberto Gonzales, Scooter Libby, Karl Rove, and David Vitter just to name a few. While the circumstances in the cases of these political figures may differ — their eventual fall from grace seems to strike an all too similar note. A once powerful politician racked by scandal…now beleaguered — by an opposition out for blood — and on the defense while fighting to restore a tarnished reputation…only to end up being forced out of office and marginalized by former allies and party officials.
Posted in Congress, Crime, general, Government, In The News, Law, makes me think, politics, Realpolitik, scandal | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Saturday, September 1, 2007
Posted in Health, Human Rights, makes me think, Muslims, occupation, Palestine, politics, poverty, war | 1 Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Wednesday, August 29, 2007
I found this somewhat useful in comparing the candidates for the 2008 Presidential election. While not as detailed as I would have liked, I think that this is a convenient tool and at least provides one with a point (or two) of reference to start at when considering a particular candidate for President. Simply select the two candidates that you would like to compare and there you go … its just that simple.
Posted in general, Government, politics, Public Policy | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, August 28, 2007
No shocking news here. However, anyone with any knowledge of Afghanistan and its turbulent history should have realized, many years ago, that this could be the only outcome of America’s war on terror & subsequent nation-building exercise. The “moderates” finally have something to rejoice in a free Afghanistan. One thing is for sure though … they’re certainly not growing soy. Thanks “W”!!!
Posted in Crime, economics, gangs, haram, makes me think, Muslims, National Security, politics, poverty, war, War on Terror, what the....?! | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, August 27, 2007
“Commander JD Gordan, a Pentagon spokesman, said the detainees “have attempted to use this medium as merely another tool in their battle of ideas against Western democracies”.“
Hmmmmm….if, according to Commander JD Gordan, poetry is a “tool” that Guantanamo’s abused detainees are using in “battle” against Western democracies…I think that this may demonstrate how truly weak and pathetic Western democracies are (or at least have become). If indeed words – poetry no less – can be regarded as tools of warfare … then I suppose we are all capable of being enemies of the state. Perhaps the Communists said the same of Vaclav Havel, once upon a time.
Personally, I believe that the world would be better off if we all took a page from the detainees of Guantanamo and simply let our words be our weapons. I could be wrong though…
Posted in free speech, general, Human Rights, In The News, Law, makes me think, Muslims, National Security, politics, war, War on Terror | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Sunday, August 26, 2007
Tawheed al Ibadaah…
Bilal Philips gives it full-force. Sorry “Sheikh Nazim” & Sidi Keller, but you guys had it coming …
Posted in Daw'ah, general, haram, Islam, Muslims, Quran, Religious matters, Sunnah | 2 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Friday, August 24, 2007
Modern day slavery? Indentured servitude? A look at child abuse, Haitian-style.
Posted in Colonialism, general, Human Rights, makes me think, poverty | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Thursday, August 23, 2007
I am all for economic growth and development…but I have to ask…
Since when were we (Muslims) allowed to invest in casinos? What’s next…majority stock ownership of Anheuser-Busch?
Posted in economics, Fiqh, general, globalization, haram, In The News, Islam, Muslims, what the....?! | 3 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, August 21, 2007
By the way, I thought Virginia was still “for Lovers”…
So where did all of the love go? I’m sure not going to ask the Black Disciples …
Posted in completely useless drivel, Crime, gangs, general, Humor, humour, strange, what the....?! | 1 Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, August 20, 2007
This is interesting if you’re into botany. Personally, I think the resources used to fund this massive project could have been better utilized elsewhere. Who knows … this might actually turn out to be something worth seeing.
Posted in general, iNteresting, Science | 2 Comments »