Seventeen years ago, a Muslim relative and I were seated around the family kitchen table discussing Islam, Christianity and world events. Suddenly, out of the blue she declared, “It’s wrong for America to have declared war on Islam!”
“What are you talking about?,” I responded, truly puzzled. “What makes you say that?”
“It’s obvious,” she answered “Just look in any newspaper and you will see how the USA is against the Islamic world.”
“Why would we target a religion?” I asked.
She said, “Ever since the fall of Communism, America has needed another enemy to replace it, and Islam is the biggest target remaining, so you have set your sights on us.”
My dear relative’s mind was filled with conspiracy theories involving the beleaguered status of Islam in the world today. And anyone who talks with enough practicing Muslims knows that she is not alone. The Islamic mind is filled with questions about what went wrong with Islamic ascendancy in the world, why the kuffar (unbelievers) are “out to get them”, and why the Muslim community is being hindered from its goal of bringing the whole world into submission to Allah. The favorite answers to these questions involve conspiracies — that is, the fault for the weaknesses and failures of the Muslim world lies principally with the machinations of others, not with the Muslim community itself.
This preoccupation with conspiracies is a direct result of the worldview inspired by the Qur’an, which teaches a supremacist ideology to its adherents. Sura 3:110 assures Muslims that they are “the best of all peoples”, while conversely unbelievers (especially Jews and Christians) are “the vilest of creatures” (98:6). Because Allah declared Muhammad to be the final prophet sent to mankind, his divine favor rests now upon all who embrace the message of Islam. As a result, the Muslim community is meant to rule the world, bringing everyone and everything into submission to the laws of Allah, which are perfect and complete (“Today I have perfected your religion for you…” [5:3]). Muslims today are taught about the glories of the caliphate(s), when Islam was ascendant over most rival powers in the world. It doesn’t take long, as Muslims survey their place in the world today, for the question “What went wrong?” to spring to mind.
Since most Muslims believe as an unassailable conviction that the religion of Islam itself is perfect, the idea of reforming Islam is a non-starter. That leaves them with two explanations.
The first is a limited form of self-assessment, with reasoning that goes like this: “Allah has promised to bless his obedient people with victory and domination over the unbelievers. But we are not victorious, which means that Allah is not happy with us. We have grown soft and disobedient. But if we return to the “straight path” and once again emulate Muhammad carefully in our lives and strive to obey Shari’a sincerely, Allah will grow pleased with us once more and will raise us to our rightful place over all rival powers.” This is the viewpoint of so-called “radical” groups, like the Muslim Brotherhood, Wahhabis, Salafists, Deobandis, Taliban and their militant offshoots — ISIS, al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, al-Shabaab, Abu Sayyaf, etc., who are calling the larger Muslim world to “get serious” about embracing the “core” of Islam, committing their lives to the ways of Muhammad.
The vast majority of Muslims, though, don’t look too deeply into their own religious shortcomings. Instead, they pin the woes of the Islamic world on the many and powerful enemies of Islam, distilled into two main opponents: the Jews (i.e., Israel) and their superpower puppet, the USA. “Why don’t we see victory after victory by Muslims over unbelievers? Why do we lag behind the West in terms of economic and military strength, technology and modern conveniences, scientific discoveries and achievements? Why are we the powerless in world affairs while “they” dictate the terms of international relations? Why are we plagued by societal violence, governmental tyranny, political corruption and cultural backwardness? The obvious answer: it is due to the cunning conspiracies of the Jews and their puppets.
The Qur’an teaches that the Jews are “the strongest in enmity” toward Islam (5:82), and that they are irredeemably wicked. Here’s an entirely accurate if abbreviated summary of the Qur’anic assessment of the Jews as a people, as compiled by Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch:
The Qur’an depicts the Jews as inveterately evil and bent on destroying the wellbeing of the Muslims. They are the strongest of all people in enmity toward the Muslims (5:82); as fabricating things and falsely ascribing them to Allah (2:79; 3:75, 3:181); claiming that Allah’s power is limited (5:64); loving to listen to lies (5:41); disobeying Allah and never observing his commands (5:13); disputing and quarreling (2:247); hiding the truth and misleading people (3:78); staging rebellion against the prophets and rejecting their guidance (2:55); being hypocritical (2:14, 2:44); giving preference to their own interests over the teachings of Muhammad (2:87); wishing evil for people and trying to mislead them (2:109); feeling pain when others are happy or fortunate (3:120); being arrogant about their being Allah’s beloved people (5:18); devouring people’s wealth by subterfuge (4:161); slandering the true religion and being cursed by Allah (4:46); killing the prophets (2:61); being merciless and heartless (2:74); never keeping their promises or fulfilling their words (2:100); being unrestrained in committing sins (5:79); being cowardly (59:13-14); being miserly (4:53); being transformed into apes and pigs for breaking the Sabbath (2:63-65; 5:59-60; 7:166); and more.
With enemies like this, so the thinking goes, it’s no wonder Islam is under siege, barely holding its own! Since “the Jews” control the world banking system, and Hollywood, and the American political system, the influential newspapers, and most major corporations, their malevolent reach is all-pervasive. What have these evil enemies and their allies been up to, conspiring against Muslims? Here’s a brief list of some of the favorite conspiracies of Muslims:
- The Holocaust was engineered by the Jews in order to obtain victimhood status leading to the appropriation of Palestine by European governments in a move to assuage their guilt
- Jewish bankers secretly meet annually in a Swiss cemetery plotting how to maintain and advance their world domination (based on the discredited, anti-Semitic propaganda piece known as The Protocol of the Elders of Zion).
- The Israeli spy service Mossad, or the CIA, or both, orchestrated the 9/11 attacks as a pretext to go to war against the Muslim world
- Israel employed secret technology which created the earthquake that launched the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami which destroyed many coastal regions inhabited by Muslims and killed almost 300,000 people
- The West’s offer of free vaccinations for polio (or other serums) are really an attempt to poison or chemically sterilize Muslims and so are to be avoided (Jonas Salk, the creator of the polio vaccine was, after all, a Jew
- The USA and Israel created the AIDS virus and introduced it into sub-Saharan Africa to kill Muslims
- The Israelis have trained sharks to attack Egyptians frequenting the Sharm al-Sheikh resort on the Red Sea
- Likewise, they have trained vultures to spy on Hezbollah in Lebanon
- Muammar Qaddafi was secretly a Jew who turned on his fellow Arab leaders
- According to former Iranian President Ahmadinejad when Iran was enduring a drought, the cause was European or Israeli technology which stole water from the clouds before they drifted over Iran
- Pepsi and Coca Cola both secretly contain pork products, a move designed to make Muslims unclean before Allah. Pepsi is really an acronym that means Pay Each Penny Save Israel.
- ISIS is a creation of Mossad and/or the CIA to wreak havoc in Muslim lands; proof of this is found in the fact that ISIS has never attacked Israel
- Likewise, the ISIS caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is really a Jewish actor by the name of Simon Elliot who was recruited by the Israelis
- Western cartoons are an attempt to indoctrinate Muslim children with unnatural characteristics: SpongeBob is a sissyfied boy and his best friend Sandy is a butch female squirrel; this is leading to gender confusion throughout the Muslim world
- A 2001 episode of The Simpsons where Bart and his buddies are pictured in jet fighters bombing Arab terrorists, the flag on the side of a terrorist jeep looks strangely like the flag of one of the Syrian resistance army flags that wouldn’t appear for another 11 years. How did the creators of the show know about that flag? The US government tipped its hand as to its plans to start the Syrian civil war and fund the terrorists! (Watch Egyptian TV clip here).
- The Western social battle against gender inequality, the thriving international drug trade, the strings of deadly earthquakes in the Muslim world and the attack on the prophet under the guise of free speech by publishing “Muhammad cartoons” are all part of the Zionist conspiracy to weaken Muslim values and livelihoods
- Lastly, one of my favorites, the reason the Muslim world cannot catch up to the West in the fields of science and technology is that the Israelis have hit squads all over the globe who are constantly murdering up and coming Muslim scientists, engineers and intellectual leaders out of fear and/or hatred. (Here’s a video clip of an Egyptian cleric espousing this view.)
In fact, in case you didn’t already realize this, the Jews are behind all the vile evils of the world, and it is the Allah-inspired, eschatological dream of Islam to eradicate all Jews from the earth, as recorded in Sahih Muslim 7339:
Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as saying:
The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim, or the servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him; but the tree Gharqad would not say, for it is the tree of the Jews.
What’s so mystifying in all this is the question of how the followers of an all-powerful, all-sovereign Allah can traffic in an endless number of conspiracies which attribute the kind of power to the Jews and other kuffar that can thwart the will of their god! Why does Allah not demolish the plots of the vilest of his enemies? After all, the Qur’an says that he is “the best of plotters!” (8:30). Is he not capable of outwitting the crafty kuffar?
Sadly, by its very nature Islam discourages Muslims from employing the feedback loop of critical self-examination, except to consider whether they are being the best Muslims they can be according to the example of Muhammad. ISIS, Boko Haram, the Salafis and Muslim Brotherhood pass this exam with flying colors. They hope their example will spur other Muslims to go “all in” as well, and ignore the question of why these “conspiracies” seem to work so successfully against the goals of the ummah even after the rise of the “radical” movement in the last 90 years.
Regardless, the blame game will continue within the house of Islam, with Muslims as victims tagging the nearest convenient non-Muslims (or the ever available Jews) as the source of their problems — unless and until they secure a united caliphate and force the submission of all challengers. Then, there’ll be no one to blame any longer, and they can bask in the knowledge of their supremacy as the best of all peoples who have finally put the vile offenders under their boot, a tiny foretaste of the punishments to which Allah will subject the reprobate for eternity in the fires of Hell.
Personally, I can’t help but root for the conspirators….