Wafa Sultan: Should we believe Obama on Islam?

Wafa Sultan is a doctor who emigrated to the United States from Syria in 1989. Since 9/11 she has been an outspoken writer against radical Islam. Photo: Associated Press

CHARLOTTESeptember 19, 2012 — In 1989 Wafa Sultan emigrated to the United States. She is a medical doctor who was born into a large traditional family in Baniyas, Syria. Since 9/11 she has debated Middle East politics and written essays in Arabic that are critical of Muslim society.

Though she wanted to be a writer, Sultan became a doctor due to pressure from her family. In 1979 she witnessed atrocities committed against innocent Syrians by Islamic extremists involved with the Muslim Brotherhood. Among the people gunned down by machine-gun toting assassins was one of her professors, a world renowned ophthalmologist.

“They shot hundreds of bullets into him,” she said. “At that point, I lost my trust in their god and began to question all our teachings. It was the turning point of my life. I had to look for another god.”

Barack Obama made a speech in Cairo on June 4, 2009 that was supposed to change the way the Islamic world views America. It was intended to make Obama look more knowledgeable and aware of Islamic culture than any previous American president.

Now, as the Middle East burns in the wake of violence throughout the region, Obama’s comments in Cairo have been called into question. None have questioned them more sharply than Wafa Sultan, who promptly replied in 2009, and whose words are even more poignant today.

Here are excerpts from Sultan’s writings following Obama’s Cairo speech.

“Mr. Obama is a politician, and a very astute one. However, his speech revealed that his view is unduly influenced by naïve desire. His perception of Islam and the reality of Islam need to be synchronized. I am a physician and a realist who has lived and experienced the effect of my Arab culture and Islamic religion since childhood.”

“The president pandered to Muslims: praised their accomplishments, commiserated with their grievances, and apologized for injustices done to them by centuries of colonialism — without once mentioning the history of rampant and violent Arab colonialism. He avoided any mention of Jihadi tenets, or of the Islamic political ideology of supremacy over non Muslims — principles embedded in Sharia law. These are taught and sanctioned openly by Al-Azhar, the university that hosted him. Obama underscored the supposed American mistreatment of terrorists and apologized for torture in Guantanamo, forgetting that Islamic regimes are brutal to their own people. In short, parts of his speech sounded like a new Pan-Arab messiah come to usher the Arab world back into its rightful world dominion.”

“Most disturbing was the president’s call to defend Muslims against negative stereotypes. A dangerous precedent is set when freedom of speech is silenced and ideological criticism forbidden. This, again, is the stuff of nightmarish totalitarian regimes. Encouraging laws to make criticism of Islam an offense punishable by law is troubling.”

“Since arriving in the US, I have enjoyed the freedom to educate my Arab brothers and sisters in the Middle East, who yearn for real freedom - and I have seen successes. Mr. Obama calls these very successes into question rather than championing freedom.”

“Obama sidesteps the acute state of affairs in the Islamic world with flattery, failing to encourage accountability for rhetoric, practices and the behavior that feed stereotypes. I did not hear an exhortation to the Islamic world to open itself to diversity, to accept women as equal citizens with the same rights and protection under law as men. I did not hear a challenge to the Muslim world to accept other religions and their ability to practice openly within the Islamic world. I did not hear a call to erase for all time, Dhimmi racism — the Sharia law-based dictate that Christians and Jews are inferior and should be suppressed.”

“I see my people’s heart bleeding and I know the pressing need for self-correction and honest examination for the sake of urgent repair. Obama dangles the carrot but shies away from the imperative issues boiling beneath the surface.

“Obama’s reality makes my work and that of others who speak up against intolerant Islamic doctrines more challenging. He undermines this mission by placating abusive, xenophobic policies and enabling those within the Islamic world to subjugate others, to coerce others to its beliefs, and to continue these pursuits with his blessing.”

“The president failed to join freedom-loving individuals, liberated Arabs like myself. He failed to lead the Muslim world into modernization and vital reform. Rather than calling out, “The house is on fire.” Obama smiles and tells us how beautiful the house is as it burns out of control and threatens to destroy us.”

“Obama is a politician who wishes to use sweet talk and to whitewash reality to make amends with Muslims.”

“I, on the other hand am a pragmatic Arab woman who escaped the prison of Islam to the free world and now devotes her life to expressing views freely and pressing for a genuine difference in Islam. We cannot have it both ways. Intolerance never tolerates freedom.”

Like so many other aspects of Barack Obama’s administration his words are empty while his deeds become dangerous reality.

The world needs more Wasa Sultan’s who are unafraid to speak out against radical Islam rather than the empty rhetoric of Barack Obama.

Peabod is Bob Taylor, owner of Taylored Media Services in Charlotte, NC. Taylor is founder of The Magellan Travel Club, which creates, and escorts customized tours to Switzerland, France and Italy for groups of 12 or more. Inquiries for groups can be made at Peabod@aol.com Taylored Media has produced marketing videos for British Rail, Rail Europe, Switzerland Tourism, the Swedish Travel & Tourism Council, the Finnish Tourist Board, the Swiss Travel System and Japan Railways Group among others. As author of The Century Club book, Peabod is now attempting to travel to 100 countries or more during his lifetime. To date he has visited 69 countries. Suggest someplace new for Bob to visit; if you want to know where he has been, check his list on Facebook. Bob plans to write a sequel to his book when he reaches his goal of 100 countries. He also played professional baseball for four years and was a sportscaster for 14 years at WBTV, the CBS affiliate in Charlotte.


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Bob Taylor

Bob Taylor has been travel writer for more than three decades. Following a career as an award winning sports producer/anchor, Taylor’s media production business produced marketing presentations for Switzerland Tourism, Rail Europe, the Finnish Tourist Board, Japan Railways Group, the Swedish Travel & Tourism Council and the Swiss Travel System among others. He is founder of The Magellan Travel Club (www.MagellanTravelClub.com) and his goal is to visit 100 countries or more during his lifetime.


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