Protests won’t stop till Islam rules world, speaker claims
September 25, 2012 | Joanne Hill - Correspondent
Muslim protests against insults to their religion will not stop until Islam overpowers all of its oppressors and rules the world, warned religious leader Moulana Hassan Mujtaba at a rally across from the American consulate on Saturday.
“You should know this,” Mujtaba exhorted, “that this is going to continue; it will not stop. As G-d [is] our witness, we will see the day when religion of Allah will overpower all of these oppressors and justice and peace will rule the world.”
His words were met with cries of “Allahu Akbar” and chanting in Arabic.
The pretext for the protest, attended by an estimated 2,000 people (most of whom were Muslim), was the online video, Innocence of Muslims, which many Muslims have deemed blasphemous. The video was reportedly made by a Coptic Christian originally from Egypt who is now an American citizen. Nonetheless, Israel, Zionists and the United States were singled out at the Toronto protest as the enemies of all Muslims.
The crowd was replete with signs featuring an Israeli flag, superimposed by a red circle with a slash through it, and the words, “I denounce Zionist attempts to spread Islamophobia.” Other signs showed crossed-out logos of the Mossad and the CIA with the slogan, “Terrorists; CIA and Mossad stop your unjust war on Islam.” One man carried this sign: “Islam will dominate the world.” Another delighted watchers when he ran a shoe over a banner bearing the words, “Fascist Israel.”
The crowd was repeatedly led in chants against the United States, Israel and Zionism and cautioned not to speak to members of the Zionist media who were described as being “filled with hate.”
Self-described “professional agitator” Zafar Bangash, president, Islamic Society of York Region, told the Muslims in the crowd, “You fulfilled your duty today and you delivered a slap on the face of our enemies whether they are in the United States or the Zionist state of Israel.”
When asked to explain the signs against Zionists and the Mossad, protest spokesperson Syed Rizvi said, “The Zionists have been involved in this industry of Islamophobia that has sprung up even in this country.... We do see a particular segment of the media, as well as a particular segment of this school of thought of Zionism, trying to promote hatred against Islam and against Muslims.”
He said protesters first want it to become socially unacceptable to “insult other people’s religious feelings” and then eventually for it to be made illegal through democratic means.
“We start with a societal norm and if we can convince enough Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, to say, ‘Let’s have a norm,’ and then the norm becomes a law as well.”
Rizvi insisted that the protesters were not there to “get shari’a [Islamic law]” but conceded that, “yes, the shari’a does ask us not to make fun of any religions. The shari’a prohibits you from making fun of Jesus, from making fun of Moses, from making fun of anything.”
The Toronto rally was organized by a group called Canadians Against Blasphemy under the auspices of the Muslim Congress, which also promoted similar protests in Houston, Los Angeles and Washington, DC. As of this paper’s deadline, there were no reports of violence at any of the North American events.
The Innocence of Muslims video has been used as justification for riots around the world, which have resulted in injuries and deaths, including the murder of US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other American embassy staff members in Libya.