Sunday, June 12, 2011
Of scholars and massacres
I'm currently working on an essay that involves a lot of difficult investigation. Once I get all the facts straight, I will post the full essay. For now, here are the apparent facts -- facts that deserve to be brought out into light of public scrutiny:
1) In 1996, seven peaceful Trappist monks who dwelled in a sleepy monastery in Algeria, who had done nothing but help Muslims from the nearby community, were abducted by a group of Muslims, and later were beheaded.
2) Soon thereafter that, a Belgian convert to Islam and academic scholar of Islamic history, Jean "Yahya" Michot, published a translation into French of a death fatwa on Christian monks in Muslim lands by a medieval Islamic scholar, Ibn Taymiyya.
a) According to some people, including the sociologist and journalist Caroline Fourest, Michot agrees with the fatwa -- that it was, and is, justified to massacre Christians in a Muslim land according to Islamic law.
3) Where is this "Yahya" Michot now? In a prison in Paris? Extradited by The Hague to some Emirate in the U.A.E. where he can pursue his justification of the massacres of Infidels in some Islamic madrassa? Hiding in a cave in Waziristan? Skulking around in the alleys of Yemen? Living under an assumed name in Somalia? No: He is currently chief editor of a scholarly journal at the Hartford Seminary in Connecticut!
The academic journal in question, The Muslim World -- dedicated to scholarship on Islamic history and culture -- was founded at the Hartford Seminary in 1911 and remains housed there. (No doubt in its earlier decades it published many, if not mostly, politically INcorrect (i.e., actually scholarly) articles about the various deformities and seamy undersides of Islamic history and culture; while more recently -- and particularly under the aegis of Professor "Yahya" -- it is grievously safe to say that it has purged itself of its former, quaintly anachronistic and morally shameful "Orientalism".)
Update: And I note another feather in the kheffiyeh of Professor "Yahya" -- according an article published in 1998 the Catholic weekly The Tablet, the professor "has now been made a fellow of the Center for Islamic Studies in Oxford". It seems that being a Muslim convert and apologist for the deadly evil of Islam is quite the career booster these days!
It is the effort of pinning down 3a that is taking most of my time. I finally recently found an article that seems to provide evidence in that regard, but it is from an online venue that requires a paid subscription, so that will take some time.
As soon as I pin the facts down, I will post the essay, then I will write a letter to the Hartford Seminary in Connecticut and ask them how they feel about having on staff a chief editor who justifies the massacre of Christians.
Imagine, by analogy, an academic journal at a prestigious black college having on staff as chief editor of one of their academic journals a white professor who believes that the lynchings of blacks by the KKK during the Reconstruction period were justified. I predict I will be simultaneously infuriated and grimly amused by the logical pretzel contortions I will receive from the Hartford Seminary (should they even deem to bother to respond to me) as they obstinately persist in defending their fanatically evil (but no doubt charmingly bespectacled, tweed-suited, kindly and erudite) scholary colleague in response to my simple question.