Dr. Muhammad Shafiq
John R. Houk
© September 19, 2014
Let’s look at Mohammed Shafiq the CEO of the Muslim British youth group Ramadhan Foundation. I was a bit confused because I read an article about a speaker at St John’s Church on Humboldt Street who had given a speech on ISIS. The St John’s speaker was listed as Dr. Mohammed Shafiq. I suspect the writer was referring to Dr. Muhammad Shafiq a Muslim Professor and Executive Director at Nazareth College with the Center for Interfaith Studies and Dialogue (CISD). I will get to Dr. Shafiq in a moment in relation to the ISIS speech at St John’s.
Now Mohammed Shafiq of the Ramadhan Foundation is considered by Muslim apologists and Left Wing multiculturalists to be a Moderate Muslim that denounces Islamic extremism. Indeed he has the death threats to back up credentials as a Moderate. Evidently the Somalian terrorist group al-Shabaab that was influential in the public beheading of British soldier Lee Rigby on the streets of London in broad daylight issued the death threat to Shafiq via video. Al-Shabaab was perturbed for Mohammed Shafiq condemning the barbarity of Rigby’s beheading.
So that makes Shafiq the image of a good Muslim that we non-Muslim Westerners like to hear about, right? Hmm… Has anyone heard the claim that a good Muslim believes that the pseudo-prophet Mohammed was the perfect man in Islam? In order to be a good Muslim one is to struggle to emulate the perfect man pseudo-prophet Mohammed.
Somehow Muslims seem to be only aware of the tolerant merciful Mohammed in his early days in Mecca prior to fleeing to Medina in what has become known as the hijra. Something seemed to have warped Mo’s mind in Medina because evolved from a monotheistic cult religious leader to a robbing bandit and finally to a vindictive conquering army leader killing and assassinating enemies with a special vengeance reserved for Jews. Thus emulating the perfect man (graphic 22 minute slide show) becomes problematic for me.
I sense that Mohammed Shafiq desires to be a good Moderate Muslim, but when push comes to shove, defending the principles of Islam overrules the Western image of a good Muslim and is replaced by the Islamic image of a good Muslim.
When there was a sex scandal involving numerous Muslim men enslaving young female sex-slaves in Shafiq’s British hometown of Rochdale:
Together Against Grooming (Tag) was organised in the wake of the convictions of Muslim men in British courts for a series of horrific cases, including in Derby, Rochdale, Telford, Bradford and Oxford, where on Thursday five men were jailed for life and two others received long sentences for the sexual abuse of girls. (Muslim youth leader says more must be done to fight grooming; By Haroon Siddique; The Guardian; 9/28/13 15.01 EDT)
The Muslim youth leader in title is Mohammed Shafiq. Shafiq in this article was shown to praising a Muslim sermon that denounced this purist Muslim treatment of young white British sex-slave gals. But at the same time Shafiq takes a walk on the racist side yet not mentioning Islam. From Debbie Schlussel:
At least one Muslim has the guts to tell the truth about his people, though he falsely couches it in purely ethnic, rather than religious terms:
‘There is a particular problem with groups of Pakistani men who think white girls are worthless,’ said Mohammed Shafiq, director of the Ramadhan Foundation. ‘They think they can use and abuse these girls in this abhorrent sort of way and then discard them.’ (UK Muslims Gang Raped White Girls b/c They Weren’t Muslim; Islamic Studies Teacher @ Mosque; By Debbie Schlussel; DebbieSchlussel.com; 5/9/12 2:56 pm)
To get a grasp of the emulation of the pseudo-prophet became a cultural rift in the UK this is a rather horrid description of what these British white sex-slaves went through:
The girls were repeatedly raped, often by groups of men several men at a time, and some were subjected to “torture sex” tortured, the jury heard. The three-and-a-half month trial at the Old Bailey exposed a series of failings by Thames Valley Police and Oxford social services. Despite being told on several occasions by the girls and their parents about their abuse, the two organisations failed to act until 2010.
One of the defendants, Mohammed Karrar – who was accused of branding an 11-year-old, forcing her a girl of 12 to have an abortion when she was 12 and subjecting her to gang rapes – initially refused to come up from his cell.
The mother of Girl C – who told the Guardian she had begged social services staff to rescue her from the gang – said that her daughter’s abusers had threatened to cut the girl’s face off. and promised to slit the throats of her family members. She said that they had been forced to leave their home after the men had threatened to decapitate family members. (Oxford child sex abuse ring ‘threatened to cut off victim’s face’; By Alexandra Topping; The Guardian; 6/26/13 11.50 EDT)
Then to cap it off, Mohammed Shafiq became upset over some quite innocuous comments from fellow Moderate Muslim and fellow British Liberal Democrat member when in an interview/question & answer session flippantly ignored a couple of teen kids portraying Jesus and Mohammed respectively on their T-shirts.
Here’s the scenario:
In 2013, two students from the London School of Economics (LSE), a major UK university in central London, set up their stall at the annual freshers’ fair (an event bringing together representatives of various clubs and societies to advertise to new students) for the LSE Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society to which they belong.
At the fair, Chris Moos and Abishek Phadnis each wore a ‘Jesus and Mo’ t-shirt – shirts featuring a cartoon from the Jesus and Mo series (www.jesusandmo.net) which satirises Jesus and Mohammed.
Chris and Abishek were immediately ordered to remove the shirts because wearing them apparently amounted to “harassment”. When they refused to do so, their stall was surrounded by uniformed security who threatened to remove them from university premises by force.
Later, the university apologised to the two students.
In January of this year, guests on the BBC Sunday morning show “The Big Questions” discussed causing offence to religious sensibilities. Chris and Abishek were invited to offer their views. When presenter Nicky Campbell questioned them on the t-shirt affair, Chris and Abishek opened their jackets to reveal the offending garments. The BBC camera operators made sure we did not get a clear view however.
Also on the programme was Maajid Nawaz. Nawaz is a former Islamist and member of Hizb ut-Tahrir who spent time in an Egyptian jail and now heads the anti-extremism think-tank the Quilliam Foundation, which hit the headlines in 2013 having begun work with the former English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson. Nawaz is also a Parliamentary candidate for the Liberal Democrat Party.
To demonstrate that he, a believing Muslim, was not offended by the depictions of Mohammed displayed in the Jesus and Mo series, Nawaz tweeted a copy of the cartoon saying that it did not upset him. (Blasphemy returns to Britain; By Anne Marie Waters; Dispatch International; 2/18/14)
Just so we are on the same page here. Maajid Nawaz a former Radical Muslim turned Moderate who has associated with Counterjihad enthusiast Tommy Robinson (who is often accused wrongfully of being a neo-Nazi) tweeted photos of the capricious young college students wearing the Jesus and Mo T-shirt parody. You need to catch that Nawaz operates an “anti-extremism think-tank” called the Quilliam Foundation.
How did the Moderate Muslim Mohammed Shafiq handle Maajid Nawaz tweeting Jesus-Mo caricatures? Shafiq put out the word to fellow Muslims and to crazy Radical Muslims that are terrorists that Nawaz was a blasphemer. And how does Islam handle blaspheming the pseudo-prophet Mohammed? A death sentence is issued. Now that is true Islam.
Mohammed Shafiq has tried to walk back any involvement in the get-even and dump fellow Liberal Democrat Nawaz. I look how Nick Cohen of The Observer puts it:
At the time we went to press, about 20,000 people had signed Shafiq’s petition to Nick Clegg, saying that the tweet had caused an “extreme amount of insult, hurt and anguish”. The Lib Dems must stop Nawaz standing as their candidate in Hampstead and Kilburn at the next general election, they demanded.
Shafiq denies that he is spreading fear and if you had not done the research you might believe him. Certainly, you could think him a man who can snuffle out offence where no one else can find it. You could think that the 20,000 or so who have signed his petition are so desperate for reasons to censor that they will manufacture them. But this is a free country and they are entitled to their hysterias.
But to put it as politely as I can, Shafiq is not your standard Liberal Democrat. He is in charge of the Ramadhan Foundation, which has hosted speakers whose attitudes towards gay people and Jews are anything but liberal. To make sure that Nawaz felt the full force of his critique, Shafiq slipped an aside into his open letter to Nick Clegg. He talked of Nawaz’s “expected, suspected, wanted reaction from the minority of unhinged in those communities”. Nawaz was deliberately soliciting attacks from the “unhinged”, apparently. He expected them. He wanted them. And if the unhinged should assault or kill him – he had no one to blame but himself. Shafiq told me that he did not mean that Nawaz was inciting his own murder, but I struggle see how else his followers can interpret his words.
On Twitter, Shafiq went further and gave a masterclass in double speak. “Ghustaki Rasool Quilliam,” he tweeted. Most of his audience had no idea what he meant. A few knew all too well. “Ghustaki Rasool” is “defamer of the prophet” in Urdu: a charge that incites Islamists to murder. Fanatics took to Twitter to prove the point. “Have spoken to someone in Pakistan,” one of Shafiq’s followers replied. “They will have a surprise for him on his next visit!” Another Twitter user contacted Nawaz to say: “Gustak e rasool is punishable by death anywhere in the world. Btw I’m in the UK not Pakistan.” A third cried that “dogs like Maajid Nawaaz will be punished!” (The Liberal Democrats face a true test of liberty; By Nick Cohen; The Guardian – The Observer; 1/25/14 13.04 EST)
At any rate the leader of the UK’s Liberal Democrat Party must have been doing some arm twisting. In a joint statement signed by both Maajid Nawaz and Mohammed Shafiq they offer a bit of give and take publicly which I doubt makes either one happy privately.
“We recognise that, when it comes to this question, some Muslims of various persuasions may take different views. However, we also recognise that there are many Muslims who have taken offence, and we assert that images of the spiritual leaders of all religions should be deemed to be respectful. We also respect the freedom of every member of the Liberal Democrats on either side of this debate who feels offended by tone or language to make representations to the Liberal Democrats as is their democratic right.
“We are both Liberals and support the principle of freedom of speech. But we also understand the importance of respect for others’ views and of moderation of language. In so far as this second principle of moderate language has been breached in the heat and passion of the current debate, we regret this and call for all those who have differing views to ensure that any debate which continues on this subject should use language and attitudes which conform to Liberal standards of respect and moderation.
“We now call on those on both sides of this argument to return to moderate debate, free of insult and threat and we do so because we believe this is in the interests of our Party, of the wider Muslim community in Britain and of the principles of peace to which Islam is committed.” (Statement by Maajid Nawaz and Mohammed Shafiq; Posted by The Voice; Liberal Democrat Voice; 1/28/14 12:10 pm)
Okay, that was about the good Moderate Muslim Mohammed Shafiq, born and raised in the United Kingdom.
Now let’s look at Dr. Muhammad Shafiq of Pakistani origin and a Muslim inter-faith Professor at a Christian college called Nazareth College located in Rochester, NY. The college’s origins in 1924 derived from Roman Catholic Sisters of St Joseph but there is no mention of Catholicism in the private school’s current curriculum. The college seems to have evolved from a parochial school to a Liberal (and I’m not talking liberal arts here) multicultural diversity slant in its current curriculum.
I have to tell you that Dr. Shafiq’s public character is representative of what an American would call a Moderate Muslim. He is the Executive Director of Rochester College’s interfaith program which seems to me to emphasize Islam more a typical Religious Studies collegiate program that usually examines all the global religions equally. Now granted secular college Religious Studies programs usually de-emphasize the Christian faith; however there is a close examination of the major religions that will include Islam. Dr. Shafiq’s direct connection to the Islamist organization the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) and his seeming promotion of Islamic interfaith understanding with American culture suggests an Islamic emphasis at Nazareth College. This is America and if the privately funded Nazareth College that had its beginning within a NY State Catholic Diocese has no problem with a person at least sympathetic with Radical Islam then who am I to complain. The only criticism I have is that IIIT representation smacks of deception in the portrayal of a peaceful Islam. It might be a good idea to examine the IIIT bona fides.
Clarion Project on IIIT
The decision to establish IIIT was made at a major Islamist conference in Lugano, Switzerland in 1977. A lead organizer was a senior member of the Egyptian Brotherhood that was also the father-in-law of Ahmed Elkadi, the president of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood from 1984 to 1994. Participants included the leaders of other Brotherhood-originated groups like the Islamic Society of North America and the Muslim Students Association and non-American Brotherhood leaders like Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi.
Swiss police raided Nada’s home in 2001 and discovered a secret 1982 Brotherhood plan called “The Project” that called for infiltrating countries around the world in order to advance the Islamist agenda. A stated goal is supporting jihad for “the establishment of an Islamic State, in parallel with gradual efforts aimed at gaining control of local power centers through institutional action.”
A 1988 FBI file states that IIIT board members Jamal Barzinji and Yaqub Mirza are among those “previously characterized as … members and leaders of the IKHWAN [Muslim Brotherhood].”Another 1988 FBI document states that a source inside the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network “advised that the IIIT … and all the subsidiary and sponsoring Muslim organizations under the control of the IIIT … are in fact IKHWAN organizations.”
A source told the FBI that IIIT leaders speak of a six-stage plan to “institute the Islamic Revolution in the United States.” The leaders “indicated that in this phase, their organization needs to peacefully get inside the United States government and also American universities.” They “claimed success in infiltrating the United States government with sympathetic of [or] compromised individuals.” The source believed IIIT was only in the first stage.
The FBI source warned that the Brotherhood has “unlimited funds” and has “set up political action front groups with no traceable ties to the IIIT or its various Muslim groups.” In a document made public, the FBI redacted the name of a Brotherhood leader, presumably within IIIT, that the source claims “stated that Muslims in the United States have to be prepared for martyrdom.”
In 1991, a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood memo stated its “work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within.” The same memo listed IIIT as one of “our organizations and the organizations of our friends.”
In 2002, the headquarters of IIIT was raided as part of a terrorism-financing investigation called Operation Green Quest. The probe continued until at least 2007 when the U.S. government tried to force convicted terrorist Sami al-Arian to testify before a grand jury about his links to the organization. IIIT was the largest donor to Sami al-Arian’s front for the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group, providing at least $50,000. Al-Arian even said in a letter to IIIT’s president in 1992 that the two groups are one.
IIIT employed a founder of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Bashir Musa Nafi, until he was deported in June 1996. Nafi was a close friend of Al-Arian’s.  Another IIIT employee, Tarik Hamdi, gave cell phone batteries to Osama Bin Laden, according to a former U.S. Treasury Department official in 2002. In 2003, IIIT made a donation of $720 to the Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation in Oregon. The Foundation was shut down as an Al-Qaeda front the following year.
IIIT has long published and promoted Islamist texts. In 1990, it endorsed the English translation of an Islamist text on Sharia (Islamic) law, Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law by Umdat al-Salik, calling it a “valuable and important” work for “teaching Islamic jurisprudence.” In 2001, it published a book authored by an IIIT official titled Violence that approved of attacks on Israeli civilians as “justified acts of a liberation struggle, not terrorism.”
The organization’s website still lists Islamist books it has published. This includes at least three by Brotherhood spiritual leader Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi. Former IIIT president Taha Jabir Al-Alwani authored one text that complains that there are no academic institutions in the Muslim world that teach “the Islamic vision with the same force and persuasiveness” as Western ideas are taught in the West.
This IIIT profile by Ryan Mauro is just an excerpt. You really should read the entire article. Discover The Networks (DTN) also has an excellent essay on IIIT. Most of the information corroborates The Clarion Project exposé but for brevity’s sake here is an excerpt that adds some extra info.
DTN on IIIT
In the early 1990s, IIIT invented and promoted the term “Islamophobia,” a term which implies that any societal fear associated with Islam is necessarily irrational, even if that fear stems from the fact that Islam’s prophet and its modern-day imams call on believers to kill infidels, or from the fact that the 9/11 attacks were carried out to implement those calls. Moreover, the term suggests that any negative societal reaction to such exhortations to violence reflects a bigotry that itself should be feared.
Former IIIT member Abdur-Rahman Muhammad — who was with that organization when the word was formally created, and who has since rejected IIIT’s ideology and terminated his membership in disgust — now reveals the original intent behind the concept of Islamophobia: “This loathsome term is nothing more than a thought-terminating cliche conceived in the bowels of Muslim think tanks for the purpose of beating down critics.” In short, in its very origins, “Islamophobia” was a term designed as a weapon to advance a totalitarian cause by stigmatizing critics and silencing them. This plan was an outgrowth of the Muslim Brotherhood’s deceptive “General Strategic Goal for North America.”
Although the term was coined in the early 1990s, “Islamophobia” did not become the focus of an active Brotherhood campaign until after 9/11.
Controlled by the extremist, Saudi-based Wahhabi movement, IIIT maintains that reports about mosques distributing hate-filled literature are untrue, and claims that the concept of jihad in no way condones or connotes violence. As an IIIT public-relations flyer puts it: “Jihad does not mean ‘holy war.’ Literally, jihad in Arabic means to strive, struggle and exert effort. It is a central and broad Islamic concept that includes struggle against evil inclinations within oneself, struggle to improve the quality of life in society, struggle in the battlefield for self-defense or fighting against tyranny or oppression.” …
IIIT is a prominent endorser of the book Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law, an authoritative compendium of sharia written by an eminent 14th-century Islamic jurist. By IIIT’s reckoning, the English translation by Umdat al-Salik is “a valuable and important work” that is highly successful in “its aim to imbue the consciousness of the non-Arabic-speaking Muslim with a sound understanding of Sacred Law.” According to Andrew McCarthy, Reliance “denies freedom of conscience, explaining that apostasy from Islam is a death-penalty offense”; contends that “a Muslim apostatizes not only by clearly renouncing Islam but by doing so implicitly — such as by deviating from the ‘consensus of Muslims,’ or making statements that could be taken as insolence toward Allah or the prophet Mohammed”; “approves a legal caste system in which the rights and privileges of Muslims and men are superior to those of non-Muslims and women”; “penalizes extramarital fornication by stoning or scourging”; endorses the death penalty for homosexuals and for people who make interest-bearing loans; venerates jihad; and exhorts Muslims “to strive to establish an Islamic government, ruled by a caliph.” READ ENTIRETY (INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ISLAMIC THOUGHT (IIIT); Determine The Networks)
Muslim apologists will look you in the eyeballs and tell the Reliance of the Traveller is not accepted as authoritative among Sharia scholars. The reality Reliance is authoritative but it is not singular. The Reliance is one of many instructive tools used by Sharia scholars.
The second source text of Islamic jurisprudence used to prepare our summaries is Reliance of the Traveller, compiled and written in the 14th century by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri. Reliance of the Traveller is a systematic codification of the laws of the Shafi‛i school of Sunni Islam. It is based primarily on the writings of Imam Rafi‛i and Imam Nawawi, scholars of Islamic law who lived in the 12th-13th centuries and in the 13th century, respectively. Although it is based on the laws of only one of the Islamic legal schools, Reliance of the Traveller is more comprehensive and detailed in its discussion of Islamic law than The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer is. Therefore, there are a number of places where our summaries refer solely to the Shafi‛i school because certain topics are discussed in Reliance of the Traveller but not in The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer. The English translation of Reliance of the Traveller also includes some sections written by a variety of commentators ranging from the 9th to the 20th centuries. In certain cases, we have cited these other commentators, always clearly noting that these citations are not from the Ibn Naqib’s original 14th century Reliance of the Traveller. On occasion, Keller’s translation of Reliance of the Traveller points out an alternative view of one of the schools other than the Shafi‛i on a particular legal point and we have mentioned these variant interpretations in our summaries. When a footnote on this site designates a source as “RT” without any mention in the text or the footnote of the time from which the comment is taken, that means that the citation is to the translation of the original 14th century text of Ibn Naqib. The full title of the original work is ‛Umdat al-salik wa ‛uddat al-nasik – The Reliance of the Traveller and Tools of the Worshipper. The English translation by Nuh Ha Mim Keller is called: Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law. Our summaries of Reliance of the Traveller are based on the 1994 revised edition of this work published by Amana Publications, Beltsville, Maryland, USA. (Laws of Religion – Source Texts Used for Laws of Islam: Jurisprudence of Schools of Islam; Religion Research Society; Last updated 10/23/12)
Al-Azhar University in Egypt can loosely be described as Sunni Islam’s versions of verified Islamic theology much like the Papacy is the final authority on all things Roman Catholic. Al-Azhar University has given the official stamp of approval to Reliance of the Traveller not only on the original medieval Arabic document but also the English translation by American converted to Islam Nuh Ha Mim Keller (now living in Jordan).
The Revised Edition (published 1991, revised 1994) is “The Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law ’Umdat al-Salik by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri (d. 769/1368) in Arabic with Facing English Text, Commentary, and Appendices”, edited and translated by Nuh Ha Mim Keller. The publisher is listed as amana publications in Beltsville, Maryland.
This an authoritative source on Sunni Islamic law, because it is certified as such by Al-Azhar University in Cairo. There is no higher authority on Sunni Islamic doctrine than Al-Azhar; it is the closest equivalent to the Vatican that can be found in Islam. (A Complete Collapse of Reason; By Baron Bodissey; Right Side News; 6/24/14 06:16)
Counterjihadists point out that Reliance is a manual on how Muslims can become brutal human beings and justified by Islam. For a synopsis of that brutality you really should read Mapping Sharia’s exposé of Reliance. Mapping Sharia also provides a link to the PDF of the full English translation of Reliance. If you want to delve into all 1251 pages in confirmation, knock yourself out HERE.
Dr. Muhammad Shafiq is a proud member of IIIT. As a proud member of IIIT he ironically is actively drawing the picture of one desirous of an interfaith dialogue between Islam and the West. AND YET as a member of IIIT he has to be supportive that organization’s secretive goals of promoting a Radical Islam (a la Muslim Brotherhood and Saudi Wahhabism) and a stealth infiltration of Western governments and culture to message acceptance of the antichrist religion of Islam.
Okay, I’ve spent a bit of time differentiating two Muslims with the same pronunciation of their names yet with different spelling. First I looked at Mohammed Shafiq and followed that by looking at Nazareth College/IIIT professor Dr. Muhammad Shafiq. Both try to project an image of a Moderate Muslim yet associations and actions expose that moderation as a probable deception.
At this point I intended to cross post Paul Sutliff’s LinkedIn page report entitled “Dr. Shafiq vs. Me”. I do believe I have ran out of time and space if you have actually read this far. So this is what I am going to do. I will first post this Shafiq and Dr. Shafiq examination then in a separate post I will cross post Mr. Sutliff’s report pointing back to my thoughts via a link.
As background it would do well for you to be cognizant of the portion of this post pertaining to Dr. Muhammad Shafiq. This will help you to understand Sutliff’s outrage about the good professor’s ISIS talk at St John’s Church on Humboldt Street in Rochester, NY on the date September 16, 2014.
(Mr. Sutliff actually re-edited his LinkedIn post and got it published at the blog calling itself The Independent Chronicle. I’ll be sticking with the LinkedIn version since that is what inspired me.)