Those unafraid to be called “Islamophobes” for criticizing the Ground Zero mosque now called Park51 have a new weapon: a translation of Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf by a man who claims to be a former Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) terrorist. If the translation holds up to linguistic scrutiny, then Imam Rauf’s claims for a mosque near Ground Zero will be seen as nothing more than religious sleight-of-hand, a form of Shariah subterfuge.
Walid Shoebat, an actual Islamophobe, claims he has “translated verbatim from the Arabic” the words of the Ground Zero Iman: those who speak both languages can check the original text here. But the words herein are from Shoebat’s translation.
“[W]e we collectively believe,” Imam Rauf said in an interview in 2007, “that the state that was erected by the prophet in Medina was the ideal model for an Islamic state. The challenge today in the Islamic world is how do we accomplish this in our current era.”
Medina, in other words, remains the ideal model for a modern Islamic state. Imam Rauf goes further to posit Shariah law within a democracy.
“So the question in our era,” he says, “throughout my discussions with contemporary Muslim theologians that an Islamic state can be established in more then just in a single form or mold; it can be established through a kingdom or a democracy. The important issue is to establish the general fundamentals of [Islamic] Shariah that are required to govern…. So in our modern era, governments that want to ensure the new laws as to not contradict Shariah rules—so they create institutions to ensure Islamic law and remove any that contradict with Shariah.”
Through “peaceful means,” the Imam also suggests “to the governors and political institutions to consult [Muslim] religious institutions and [Muslim] personalities in the field as to assure their decision making to reflect the spirit of Shariah.”
Another translation of Imam Rauf by Shoebat, taken from a Jordanian newspaper in May 2009, puts Park51 into question as a place of true religious and community dialogue.
“Religious dialogue as customary understood is a set of events with discussions in large hotels that result in nothing,” Imam Rauf writes in the Shoebat translation. “Religions do not dialogue and dialogue is not present in the attitudes of the followers regardless of being Muslim or Christian. The image of Muslims in the West is complex which needs to be remedied.”
Those who see the Park51 mosque formerly known as “Cordoba” now have evidence that the acclaimed moderate Imam Rauf wants to see Shariah law take hold in the United States—a different posture for the cleric who speaks in the mother tongue to another purpose under heaven.