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Here’s What America’s Founders Had to Say About Muslims

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Akbar Ahmed

President Barack Obama may be willing to claim that “Islam has always been part of America,” but the Founders disagreed with him on that.  Akbar Ahmed, the chair of Islamic studies at American University, says almost the same thing.  This certified idiot has advised many government officials, including General Petraeus, Richard Holbrooke, and George W. Bush. He speaks regularly on BBC and CNN, and has appeared on many U.S. shows, including Oprah and Nightline.  To oppose the “burn the Quran” event planned by Pastor Terry Jones, Ahmed wrote an editorial for CNN in which he stated:

Not only are the actions of Jones contrary to the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, but they are also against the ideals of the American Founding Fathers. […] The Founding Fathers read and honored the same Quran that Jones is now seeking to burn. […] [John Adams, America’s second president] showed the utmost respect for Islam, naming the Prophet Mohammed as one of the greatest truth seekers in history. [4]

Ahmed also claims in his editorial that “Benjamin Franklin called the Prophet Mohammed a model of compassion.” Ahmed made similar claims on The Daily Show:

I quote the Founding Fathers. …(Ben) Franklin called him a model of compassion. And Jefferson had the first Iftaar … and owned a copy of the Quran. … Those Americans who are attacking Islam simply as a terrorist religion or a religion of evil, really need to go back to their own Founding Fathers. [1]

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John Adams

Of course, these statements are utterly opposed by the facts. John Adams did indeed own a Quran — the copy he owned contained the following in the preface:

This book is a long conference of God, the angels, and Mahomet, which that false prophet very grossly invented; sometimes he introduceth God, who speaketh to him, and teacheth him his law, then an angel, among the prophets, and frequently maketh God to speak in the plural. … Thou wilt wonder that such absurdities have infected the best part of the world, and wilt avouch, that the knowledge of what is contained in this book, will render that law contemptible …

For those who think that perhaps Akbar Ahmed misspoke, and was referring to John Adams’ son, John Quincy Adams? The sixth president, not the second… well… it doesn’t work either.

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John Quincy Adams

John Quincy Adams, America’s sixth president, described Muhammad as “combining the powers of transcendent genius, with the preternatural energy of a fanatic, and the fraudulent spirit of an impostor, (who) proclaimed himself as a messenger from Heaven, and spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth.”  [3] He called Muhammad’s taking on of the title “Prophet” as an “audacious falsehood” and Islam as a brutish faith that propagated sexual lust and violenceMuhammad “poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex, and the allowance of polygamy; and he declared undistinguishing and exterminating war, as a part of his religion, against all the rest of mankind. THE ESSENCE OF HIS DOCTRINE WAS VIOLENCE AND LUST: TO EXALT THE BRUTAL OVER THE SPIRITUAL PART OF HUMAN NATURE,” Adams wrote.  He also understood quite well that Muslims were commanded by their holy writings to make war against those they considered infidels.  “The precept of the koran is, perpetual war against all who deny, that Mahomet is the prophet of God,” he wrote. “The vanquished may purchase their lives, by the payment of tribute; the victorious may be appeased by a false and delusive promise of peace; and the faithful follower of the prophet, may submit to the imperious necessities of defeat: but the command to propagate the Moslem creed by the sword is always obligatory, when it can be made effective.  “The commands of the prophet may be performed alike, by fraud, or by force,” Adams concluded. [3]

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Benjamin Franklin

Even the free-thinking Benjamin Franklin had no illusions about the violent goals of Muhammad’s followers. [1] “Nor can the Plundering of Infidels be in that sacred Book (the Quran) forbidden,” he explained, “since it is well known from it, that God has given the World, and all that it contains, to his faithful Mussulmen, who are to enjoy it of Right as fast as they conquer it.” [3]

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Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson, like John Adams, did own a Quran, one translated by George Sale. Here are some of Sale’s comments on the Quran, included by Sale in his introduction: “It is certainly one of the most convincing proofs that Mohammedism was no other than human invention, that it owed its progress and establishment almost entirely to the sword.”  In his editorial, Akbar Ahmed claims:  Thomas Jefferson kept the … Quran in his personal collection and it informed his decision to host the first presidential iftaar during Ramadan.  President Obama repeated this claim — that Jefferson hosted the first presidential iftaar — at the most recent White House Ramadan dinner.  This is absolutely not true. Let’s review the facts.  During the Barbary Wars, in 1805, the bey (i.e., monarch) of Tunis threatened war with the United States after the U.S. had been successful in capturing some Tunisian pirate ships. The bey sent an envoy to the United States to negotiate for the return of the ships. This envoy stayed in Washington for six months, during which the month of Ramadan passed.  One of Thomas Jefferson’s many invitations extended to this envoy to meet with him at the White House was during the month of Ramadan. To accommodate the envoy’s religious obligation, Jefferson changed the time of dinner from the usual “half after three” to “precisely at sunset.”  Jefferson was being polite — not celebrating the first White House iftaar, as Akbar Ahmed suggests.  The first Ramadan iftaar was not actually held at the White House until 1996. [3]

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[1] Laura Rubenfeld, No, Professor Ahmed, the Founders Were Not So Fond of Islam, PJ Media,  September 10, 2010 – 12:00 am
[4] Akbar Ahmed, ‘Burn Quran Day’ an outrage to Muslims, CNN, August 20, 2010 9:18 a.m. EDT

 

About Bill Wallace

Bill Wallace is a self-fashioned writter, a computer programmer and cybermarketer from Quebec City, Canada who decided to enter the political arena after his disillusionment with the socialist system under which he was living in the French Canadian province of Quebec.

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