Bell: A Home-Grown ‘Champion of Islam’

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Stewart Bell has a scary piece about the increasing numbers of young Canadian Muslims indoctrinated into extremism, focusing on one especially nasty Home-grown ‘champion of Islam’.

TORONTO -Naeem Muhammad Khan wants everyone to “Support Our Troops,” but he’s not talking about the Canadian Forces in Kandahar.

From his apartment in Toronto, Mr. Khan has been posting messages on the Internet calling Osama bin Laden a “hero” and “champion of Islam.” The 23-year-old fundamentalist’s online logo combines the black Taliban flag and the outline of an AK-47 above the “Support Our Troops” slogan.

Between sips of iced coffee at Tim Hortons, Mr. Khan explained that he is a supporter of the Taliban, as well as other armed Islamic groups.

“ ‘Support our Troops’ means supporting the mujahideen [Muslim soldiers of God] who are fighting for their freedom and rights against illegal occupation in many, many places over the world like Afghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya, Kashmir, Palestine and Somalia,” he said later in an e-mail.

Views like these are becoming increasingly common in Western countries, Canada included, and they are worrying to governments concerned about radicalism and violence. Mr. Khan is an Islamist, not a terrorist, but what most disturbs moderate Muslims are his harsh comments about those who do not subscribe to fundamentalist beliefs.

In his online postings, Mr. Khan calls Tarek Fatah, Irshad Manji and other moderates “apostates,” and says that under Islamic law, the punishment for apostasy is death. The same goes for those who insult Islam.

“Behead her!!! And make a nice video and post it on YouTube,” he writes about one “Islam basher.” As for “Jews who support Zionism and Israel … since they are killing Palestinians … killing them is not bad … they deserve to die.”

Where are people like Naeem Muhammad Khan learning this Dark Ages hatred? Where else? In the mosques.

“In recent times, hundreds of Islamic radicals have settled in Canada,” said Tahir Gora, a Pakistan-born writer who has been tackling the issue in his Hamilton Spectator columns.

“They are spreading hatred and extremism in the guise of freedom of expression. On the other hand, they put death penalties to those dissidents who challenge the traditional medieval way of Islam.”

Mr. Gora heads the Canada Safety Think Tank, which monitors what he calls the growing Islamist radicalization in the country. He wants Ottawa to take the issue more seriously and believes police should lay hate-crimes charges against extremists who pronounce death sentences on moderates like himself.

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