A River of Blood Runs Through It

By: Ibn Kammuna

In his book Islam and Terrorism, Mark Gabriel tells his story of disillusionment with Al-Azhar, the most prestigious Islamic school in the Middle East, and possibly the world. Mark is no secondary scholar. He has done all his studies in Al-Azhar, was one of the top students and researchers, and eventually specialized in Islamic history, and became an Azhar professor himself. This was more than fifteen years ago. This article deals with his disillusionment with the Azhar, and subsequently Islam. Gabriel was an Imam in Egypt in Giza (an area in the proximity of the great pyramids). One Friday, his Juma’a sermon was on jihad. Here is a partial quote of what he said:

    Jihad in Islam is defending the Islamic nation and Islam against the attacks of its enemies. Islam is a religion of peace and only will fight against one who fights it….

When he was done preaching, he had to resort to the Qur’an to drive his point home. He quoted the verse 17:33

    And do not kill anyone whose killing Allah has forbidden, except for a just cause

Talk about out of context! I am used to Muslims throwing that accusation right in our face every time we said something “inappropriate” about the Qur’an or even a story of bad taste that Muhammad was engaged in. Does looting and raping ring a bell? In any case, Mark was a fresh graduate from the Azhar. He tells us that Al-Azhar focuses on politically correct Islam, and avoids teachings that conflict with the political authority.

During that time, the Jihad movement in Egypt was very active in attacking Christians and their churches via violence and bombs. Mark had a friend who was active in the Jihad movement, so he asked him: “Why are you killing our neighbors and countrymen whom we grew up with?” His friend was astonished at such a question and told him that Christians did not accept the call of Islam and are not willing to pay the Jizyah (infidel-only tax) to have the right to practice their beliefs. Hence, the only option is the sword of Islamic law.

Such is the logic of Islam. Islam is correct whether you like it or not. You either become a Muslim or pay up while in submission, just to allow you to live and practice your own beliefs. It boggles my mind how a group of people, Muslims in this case, can believe in the absolute truth in what they believe in, without extending the same right to other groups of people (i.e. Christians, Hindus, Buddhists). Such an extension will be a definite threat to Islam. It allows equality of peoples and equality of beliefs, something the ideology of Islam cannot condone, not ever. Islam anywhere is to be superior to anyone else. When I think about Islam, I think about a primitive barbarian religion that came out of Arabia 1400 years ago, through a maniac who committed so much evil through terror. In many Islamic and non Islamic countries, this drama about Islam keeps unfolding. Muslims in Egypt are no less evil than Muhammad, or Mahomet as Schulz would call that crazy man. Egyptian Muslims are on a dark mission of trying to annihilate the original natives of Egypt; Coptic Christians.

Going back to our topic of discussion about Mark Gabriel, he was honest to his intellect and realized that he had two choices as a Muslim: to follow political “Christianized” Islam and please the government and the Azhar, or go the Jihadi route of violence, which is the true face of Islam.

Make no mistake about it: Islam is a religion of hate, prejudice and violence. Here is what Mark Gabriel; an Azhar scholar, who specialized in Islamic history, writes about it:

    Islam is full of discrimination-against women, against non-Muslims, against Christians and most especially against Jews. Hatred is built into the religion.

    The history of Islam,
    which was my special area of study, could only be characterized as a river of blood. (Page. 5)

It is at that point in his intellectual journey that Mark Gabriel rejected the basic tenets of Islam; a fascistic ideology indeed, and embraced humanity. He could not say that the Qur’an came directly from the great creator of this universe. For that, he was fired from the Azhar after taking some abuse by the Azhar’s great minds who resorted to their best methods of intellectual pursuits by spitting on Dr. Gabriel’s face, cursing him and calling him a bastard.

Mark had a critical mind and an honest heart. He could not stay silent in the face of the truth. However, for that, he lost his job as an Azhar professor, the Egyptian police took him and tortured him to a point where he thought he would surely die. After he was out, he stayed a year without any religious belief system at all. After that he became a Christian after reading the sermon on the mount. In my view, anyone, Christian or not, has got to love the teachings in the Sermon on the Mount. Love, Mercy, and forgiveness are taken to their full extent in that sermon.

Another sad part in Mark’s life is that some devout Muslims attempted to stab him and finish him for good. When his father learned that he became a Christian, he, the father, took a loaded gun and came after his son. How evil can a religion be that forces a loving father to get a loaded gun and come after his son with the intent of killing him? Can such a religion be divine? In any case, Gariel had to flee the country and ended up in South Africa.

This article about Mark Gabriel’s story stops here. However, I plan a future writing on the roots of terrorism in Islam based on the same book I relied on in writing this article. After all, Mark is an authority on Islamic history in all of its horrors that only a blind in heart can’t see.


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