Matthew Shaffer of NRO (as noted here by Ethel Fenig) exposed Keith Ellison’s mendacious taqiyya (Koran-sanctioned Islamic dissimulation) theater during the Congressman’s testimony at Thursday’s Homeland Security Hearings on American Muslim radicalization.
The next day, during a 3/11/11 interview with Bill Maher (on “Real Time With Bill Maher”), responding to Maher’s complaint that, “[Islam] comes from a hate-filled holy book, the Koran, which is taken very literally by its people,” Ellison invoked a deceitfully redacted extract of Koran 5:32, and the ostensible Koranic paean to “tolerance,” verse 2:256.
Ellison’s disingenuous response was predictable.
Following the murderous acts of jihad terrorism committed on September 11, 2001, Ibn Warraq highlighted the tragic irony of many apologists quoting selectively from Koran 5:32, “whoso slays a soul …shall be as if he had slain mankind altogether; and whoso gives life to a soul, shall be as if he has given life to mankind altogether”, attempting to demonstrate that the Koran disapproved of violence and killing. Here is the entire verse (5:32), quoted in full context, with the intimately related verse, Koran 5:33:
(5:32) Therefore We prescribed for the Children of Israel that whoso slays a soul not to retaliate for a soul slain, nor for corruption done in the land, shall be as if he had slain mankind altogether; and whoso gives life to a soul, shall be as if he has given life to mankind altogether. Our Messengers have already come to them with the clear signs; then many of them thereafter commit excesses in the earth. (5:33) This is the recompense of those who fight against God and His Messenger, and hasten about the earth, to do corruption there: they shall be slaughtered, or crucified, or their hands and feet shall alternately be struck off; or they shall be banished from the land. That is a degradation for them in this world; and in the world to come awaits them a mighty chastisement
[For direct comparison see, Mishna, Sanhedrin, IV, 5, “Thus was created a single man, to teach us that every person who loses a single soul, it shall be written about him as if he has lost the entire world, and every person who sustains a single soul, it shall be written, about him as if he has sustained the entire world”]
As Warraq noted, with regard to Koran 5:32/33, 1
The supposedly noble sentiments are in fact a warning to Jews. [2 see these commentaries as well] “Behave, or else” is the message. Far from abjuring violence, these verses aggressively point out that anyone opposing the Prophet will be killed, crucified, mutilated, and banished
Regarding the other pacific sounding verse Congressman Ellison cited, 2:256, it must be contextualized by Muhammad’s bellicose evolution within the Koran itself. But how, exactly? Abrogation is critical to understanding this evolution. Ali ibn Abi Talib—revered by Shiite Muslims and Islam’s 4th “Rightly Guided” Caliph—is reported to have told a pious Muslim companion, Abdul Rahman
“[C]an you differentiate between abrogating and abrogated verses” Abdul Rahman said, “no.” Thereupon Ali said “Thou art damned and causeth others to be damned.”
The Koran’s “verses of peace,” as cited by Ellison, and many other Muslim and non-Muslim apologists, most notably verse 2:256, “There is no compulsion in religion,” were all abrogated by the so-called verses of the sword. These abrogating verses of the sword recommend beheading or otherwise murdering and mutilating non-Muslims, and Muslim apostates. According to classical Muslim Koranic commentators verse 9:5 (perhaps the most infamous verse of the sword), “Slay the idolators wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush…”, for example, cancels 124 verses that promote patience and toleration. And this doctrine of abrogation, necessitated by the many contradictions which abound in the Koran, originates as putatively taught by Muhammad, himself, at verse 2:106: “Whatever communications We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We bring one better than it or like it. Do you not know that Allah has power over all things?”. This verse, in combination with verses* 16:101, 22:52, and 87:6, was elaborated into a formal system of abrogation (naskh in Arabic) by the greatest classical Muslim Koranic scholars and jurists, which entailed (p.72),
…the suppression of a ruling without the suppression of the wording. That is to say, the earlier ruling is still to be found in the Koran, and is still to this day recited in worship, but it no longer has any legal force.