“If They [Muslims] Had Gotten Rid of the Punishment for Apostasy, Islam Would Not Exist Today.” SheikhYusuf al-Qaradawi
“If he is terrorizing the terrorists, if he is terrorizing America the terrorist, I am with him. Every Muslim should be a terrorist.”
“People who change their religion should face the death penalty.”
(Day 65 of the federal guidelines for social distancing)
“The Solution for Humanity” is the tagline for the global television station, Peace TV. Peace TV was founded in 2016 by Dr. Zakir Naik, a controversial, yet wildly popular Islamic figure, formerly from India. Naik was recently stripped by the Indian government of his citizenship and is considered a fugitive. He now lives as a guest in Malaysia.
Most of us in the West have never heard of Zakir Naik, however, his popularity as a radical cleric is growing astronomically across the Islamic world. He, as previously stated, is known as a controversial Muslim Indian preacher, and is the founder of Peace TV, a nonprofit satellite television network which broadcasts from Dubai, UAE, “free-to-air” programs in English, Bengali, Chinese and Urdu. According to the latest reports, it boasts over 200 million viewers.
Controversial figures such as Zakir Naik have the potential to throw many communities into a frenzy. This is already happening. The availability of mass media such as television, internet and radio, gives radical characters such as Naik the audiences they need in order to spread their message of venomous hate and violence.
We will discover in this issue of “More than Meets the Eye,” how modern media figures such as Zakir Naik can have a huge impact on global security events. He wields an enormous amount of influence across the Muslim world. Many Muslim youth, as well as Muslim governments, are listening to his message. Do not be deceived by the fact that you may never have heard of him. His message is powerful and is impacting many people’s lives.
What is Zakir Naik’s message? That is the sad part of this entire affair. It is not a message of peace, which is what he would have us believe. It is a message of violence, hubris, and contempt, into which many are buying.
Zakir Naik is calling for the creation of a Muslim world database, which would hold information on any Muslim or Non-Muslim in the entire world who ever said anything bad about Mohammad, Islam or the Qur’an. That database would be used at airports, or international passenger terminals of any kind to identify individuals who may have written an article or made a video saying anything against Islam. Those individuals would be arrested in that country and tried in an Islamic Shari’a court on blasphemy charges, in some cases (not all) punishable by death. All the details of his plan are not yet fully laid out, but the consequences of such a database are not to be ignored.
Zakir Abdul Karim Naik (born 18 October 1965) is an Indian Islamic televangelist and preacher. Not only is he the founder of Peace TV, he is also the founder and president of the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) as well. Here are a few interesting facts about Dr. Naik.
- He is a medical doctor.
- He generally only preaches in English, using colloquial language.
- He has delivered over 2,000 messages around the world.
- In 2012, he delivered a message in India to a group of over one million.
- He is the winner of the King Faisal Award for Service to Islam.
- The Malaysian Prime Minister awarded him the Distinguished Islamic Personality Award.
- The videos on his youtube video channel get millions of views.
- He is ranked 38th on the world’s most influential Muslims list.
Dr. Zakir Naik is becoming a social media phenomenon. He has 2.7 million personal Facebook followers. His rallies are attended by millions. So, when he begins to petition governments to build a “database of blasphemers,” one begins to wonder how well this might be received.
Dr. Naik is of course, not admired everywhere, and his star may be beginning to tarnish, due to some recent decisions he has made. Though he currently lives in Malaysia, his status there is tenuous because of some published comments he made recently about the Indians and Chinese who reside there. Together they comprise almost 40% of the population.
According to “The Star” newspaper, Malaysian police have recently recorded that Dr. Naik is barred from delivering public talks in Malaysia. He is reported as saying that the Malaysian government should consider sending the Chinese back to China, and the Indians back to India. As you can imagine, that message did not go over well with a large segment of the population.
Lastly, Dr. Naik is one of the principal proponents of the 9/11 conspiracy theories. In a July 2008 broadcast, Naik suggested that al-Qaeda was not responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States. “Even a fool will know that this was an inside job,” he said in the video, claiming that, then-President George W. Bush was behind the plot.
Peace TV is a 24-hour Islamic TV channel, broadcasting “free to air,” state-of-the-art TV programs in English, Bengali, Chinese, and Urdu. The TV programs feature internationally renowned religious and humanitarian scholars and orators. They are backed up by the best available media technology, creativity, research, program software and operational management. They promote truth, justice, morality, harmony, wisdom, and peace for the whole of humankind.
Peace TV network can now be received live in more than 125 countries worldwide including many parts of Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa, Australia & the USA via:
- Google Play Store
- App Store
- & Peace TV website www.peacetv.tv
Peace TV Network History:
- Peace TV English launched in 2006
- Peace TV Urdu launched in 2009
- Peace TV Bangli launched in 2011
- Peace TV Chinese launched 2015
Peace TV is a powerful media outlet that broadcasts throughout the Islamic community, worldwide. The TV station serves as a significant platform for Dr. Naik to communicate his ideas, especially concerning the “blasphemers database.” It has, however, come under fire recently, as U.K.’s media watchdog Ofcom has fined controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik’s Peace TV network 300,000 pounds for broadcasting “hate speech” and “highly offensive” content in the country. Ofcom concluded that some of the content on their Urdu language channel represented serious failures of compliance concerning their broadcasting rules.
When global travel is unrestricted by governments, the last thing anybody wants to experience after flying for hours is being escorted off in hand-cuffs, then taken to a poorly lit interrogation room where they would be subjected to hours of questioning and accusations, because of a ubiquitous database entry that may or may not actually be accurate. It may be a stretch to think that something like this could ever happen, but it is not outside the realm of possibility. With the increasing popularity of men like Zakir Naik on social and global mass media, tides can turn quickly, depending on who is mastering the technological trends.
There is a widening gap between the West and the East these days. There are so many reasons for this gap, some of which are education, technology, wealth, media, and religion. As the chasm widens the cost of human interaction and security will increase. It will require all of us to do a better job of assessing both security and risk, and then implementing a plan to mitigate as much risk as we can, through sound security principles.
We must act now. There are steps we should take before we travel to Muslim nations, in order to mitigate the effects of falsified information about ourselves. This should happen whether such a nefarious database is operational or not.
- Before we travel to other countries, Islamic or not, we ought to contact the Consular office of that nation in the US, in order to inquire if there are any cultural or religious regulations of which we should be aware.
- We could check to see if the particular Consular office has a “blasphemy database.” My guess is, that if they do develop such a database, it will not be public knowledge, and it may be integrated within an already existing database. This is actually a common practice within the international police community, used to track potential criminal activity. Interpol already has 18 extensive databases that they can use to track almost anyone they desire. These databases include DNA profiles, fingerprints, facial recognition, travel documents, and forensic information of all kinds. One way we can access our personal data is through: https://www.truthfinder.com Here you may find a database, which includes the Interpol’s criminal system, from which they report. This is all public information.
- Practice functional situational awareness when traveling. It is important that we not allow the slim potential for an identity mix-up to keep us from traveling. As far as we know right now, the “blasphemy database” does not yet exist. The point of my article is that the potential of such a database is real, as there is an increasingly felt need for it within the radical Islamic community. This community is growing in influence, therefore, a “blasphemy database” may become a reality due to the passionate words of a public figure who is considered by many, to be a “moderate,” a term that I, as an analyst, as well as most Islamists would find offensive.
SUDAN Situation Report…https://reports.unocha.org/en/country/sudan/
The Syrian Civil War’s Never-Ending Endgame…https://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/insights/28041/the-syria-civil-war-might-be-ending-but-the-crisis-will-live-on
For your comments or questions about any of our digests please feel free to write to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org