Why we Support Chicago 2016
  About   |   Contact   |   Donate   |   Site Map   |   About Islam   |   Activist Corner   >> Today is Tuesday, March 31, 2015  
Our News
Our Multimedia
CAIR-Chi in the Press
Action Alerts
Press Releases
Media Monitor
Hate Watch
The Scoop
Civil Rights Center
Intern Center
Volunteer Center
Career Center
Resource Center
Report An Incident
Write to the Media
Request A Speaker
Make A Donation
Become A Member
Annual Events
Our Partners
The Mobilizer Blog
MYLS Website
Our Old Site | Oldest
Contact us

Peaceful Muslims detained
National Catholic Reporter
October 15, 2004

By Ahmed Rehab

* Regarding "Arrest of Cat Stevens breaks trust with moderates" (NCR, Oct. 8): A high-ranking U.S. official once asked me, "What is the single most detrimental scenario we must avoid at all costs, if we are ever to convince the world that our fight is against terrorism and not Islam?"

I quickly answered, "Forgoing bin Laden the terrorist, while nabbing Yusuf Islam the peace activist."

Well, actually, this conversation never took place. But how I wish it had.

For here we are indeed: The worst-case scenario is playing out before our eyes! Bin Laden and Al Zawahiri remain free, while we focus our resources on stifling the reconciliatory voices of highly revered Muslim peace activists like Tariq Ramadan and Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens).

Whether or not we mean to do so, the message we are sending out to the world is shamelessly clear: Peaceful Muslims are not immune to our retaliation and wrath.

I remind myself of a quick lesson from the 19th century. French colonel Alfred Dreyfus stood humiliated and dejected throughout his court martial in Paris, 1898. Yet after the dust had cleared, the ordeal went down forever as a shameful episode of French history. Dreyfus had been accused of treason, but just as with Yusuf Islam and Tariq Ramadan, no sufficient evidence was ever put forth to support the accusations. Just as with them, his only crime was belonging to the wrong religion at the wrong time (in Dreyfus' case, Judaism).

If not remedied, the Yusuf Islam episode will also be remembered as nothing more than a shameful episode of U.S. history.



[Ahmed Rehab is communications director for the Council on American Islamic Relations in Chicago.]

copyright © 2004, National Catholic Reporter

First Name:

Last Name:


I liked it          I didn't like it    I am indifferent   



28 E. Jackson Blvd, Suite 1700, Chicago, IL 60604 | T: (312) 212-1520 | F: (312) 212-1530
| Our News | News Briefs | Action Alerts | Press Center | Events/Workshops | In the News | Volunteer Center | Media Monitor | Resource Center | Report An Incident |
Request A Speaker | Make A Donation | Downloads | Multimedia | The Scoop | Our Partners | Careers | Interns | Newsletter | Contact Us | Proud To Be Muslim |
All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2005-2011 © CAIR Chicago. Questions or Comments, Email

Site Designed by