Tim Blair


New Criterion



Sunday, November 24, 2002

Uncle was dropped in the font by a drunken priest and has since taken no interest in religion. However, my breast-stroke is quite adequate, and I am not ungrateful.

You could show me the Koran and call it the Book of Revelations and I'd be none the wiser.

So when Alice of Perth instructs me in the finer points of Islamic ethics in response to my rhetorical question on Sheik Al Hilaly I am as receptive as a babe.

Taqija – Dissimulation.

The 4th Conference of Islamic Research at Al Azar University in Cairo, 1970 reached the following conclusion concerning Taqija as the normative practice for Sunni Muslims. It is acceptable to practice Taqija when serving the propagation of Islam or to benefit a Muslim.

Fraud and lies are a religiously permitted means in Islam. A negotiated settlement or an agreement with a non-Muslim is never final. Lying to ‘infidels’ is officially acknowledged. A Muslim is permitted
to hide his/her intentions in a difficult situation. For instance, if a person with a minimum (or no) knowledge of Koranic learning points to the harsher verses, they must be deflected to the gentler verses, and the harsher verses are to be hidden....

Both Keyser Trad and Sheikh al-Hilaly understand this perfectly. I wonder if the staff at the ABC, SMH et al do, and if so, why do they operate as if we out here in mushroom land do not.

For all Uncle knows this may be true or it may be urban myth. According to the University of Google the proximate source is a Danish site that would not claim to have all its irons out of the fire. It also scores a mention on Country Store and in Little green footballs. Both trace back to the Danish site.

Here is a long and earnest Islamic treatment. You're welcome to it.

For a non-theologian like Uncle it matters whether the Mullah's foul politics spring from theology, ideology or stupidity.

Only the last is, in a practical sense, correctable, and the first two are likely to be propagated at taxpayer's expense.

But it may just be true that Mullah and Trad rely about as much on Taqija as the average Christian Primate relies on turning the other cheek - to those who disagree with him in Australia, that is.