There is nothing that resembles Islam

Muslim organizations in Milwaukee hope the Paris terror attacks do not spark anti-Islamic threats.

“We still hear people say, ‘Why don’t Muslims condemn this?’ But Muslims are always condemning this,'” said Janan Najeeb, president of the Milwaukee Muslim Women’s Coalition.

Najeeb says besides the ongoing grief over innocent people dying, it saddens the Muslim community that a terrorist group like ISIS claims to be an Islamic organization. “There is nothing that resembles Islam in their actions,” said Najeeb.

Najeeb continues to educate the public about Islam and how terrorists are killing Muslims regularly.

“We also want people to understand that Muslims are suffering the most at the hands of these violent terrorist groups,” said Najeeb.

For instance, just a day before the Paris attacks, more than 40 people were killed in a double suicide bombing in Beirut, Lebanon.

“It think it’s important to recognize whether it’s lives in Europe or lives in the United States or lives in the Middle East or lives in Africa, that all lives are sacred,” said Najeeb.

To that point, Najeeb was grateful when Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers denounced a fan’s disparaging remark made toward Muslims during a moment of silence Sunday for the victims of the Paris attacks.

Facebook apologised to the nationalist Britain First group after removing an Anti-ISIS roll of toilet paper post

c51e83597bfff39cf341fd2fbb89972cSocial networking website Facebook has apologised to the nationalist Britain First group after removing a critical post about ISIS involving a roll of toilet paper made up of the black flag used by the terrorist group.

Earlier this week, Britain First – which has been criticised by Britain’s mainstream media for its direct action tactics in opposing radical Islam – reported that one of its Facebook posts had been removed by Facebook due to a ‘Community Standards’ violation.

The group reported that its leader, Paul Golding, was “logged out of his Facebook account and given a slap on the wrist by Facebook moderators” for posting a picture of an ISIS flag-themed toilet roll with the accompanying comment, “Soon to be stocked in the Britain First shop!”

Britain First then contacted Facebook demanding an explanation. A Facebook chat support employee said: “obviously it was not complying with Facebook community standards” and followed up with “I understand where you’re coming from but posts like this will be taken down without doubt”.

The moderator goes on, “I understand that you want to express your opinion but please do understand that Facebook is trying to treat everyone the same… I know it doesn’t make sense when it comes to ISIL but those are the Policy standards of the company”.

Golding asked, “So no more anti-ISIL posts?” to which the moderator replied, “I believe you can share posts about ISIL, just try to tone down the sarcasm :)”.

But Facebook has since climbed down, claiming that the removal of the post, and subsequent messages, were in error.

Breitbart London contacted Facebook for comment at 3pm yesterday, and by 4pm, the company had issued an apology to Britain First.

A Facebook spokesman told Breitbart London: “We made a mistake by incorrectly identifying this post as supporting ISIS. After review, we realised that the post was mocking the terrorist group, and it has therefore been restored. We apologies for any confusion or inconvenience caused.”

The social networking site is said to employ hundreds of people across offices in Dublin, Hyderabad, Austin and Menlo Park, California to help deal with high numbers of reports of offensive content.

But Britain First highlighted the hypocrisy of the website’s rules, as they allow multiple pages entitled “Death to Israel”, some of which contain highly inflammatory, anti-Semitic content.

Canadian Jewish businessman campaigns to free Iraqi women captives

eeSteve Maman, Jewish businessman from Canadian Montreal, started last year a campaign to free Iraqi women held captives in the hands of Da’ish (ISIS) organization.

Da’ish gunmen stormed into Iraqi Sinjar Mountain, where mostly inhabited by the Izidi sect, and held hundreds of women and children, forcing them to slavery.

Today, Maman is organizing an international campaign to release 128 Izidi and Christian women and “free them from sex slavery” practiced by Da’ish against its victims.

Western press named Maman as “the Jewish Schindler”, in reference to Oscar Schindler, who was one of the prominent businessmen during the Nazi rule.

Schindler was successful in saving hundreds of Jews working in his factories for the Holocaust and Nazi chasing in Poland.

The story of Schindler was a subject for a film in 1993 and got 7 Oscar prizes.

Media reports said that Maman, 42, managed to collect 200.000 dollars in two days to be paid to the kidnappers for freeing the Izidi and Christian women in Iraq.

It is expected that Da’ish organization will release 10 women in the coming few days, the reports added.

In August, 2014, Da’ish gunmen killed more than 5000 Izidis, mostly in collective killing operations, according to UN reports.

Maman, father of six children, started his campaign to get 500.000 dollars, but now he is planning to get 5 million dollars for this end, the reports added.

Some sources expected that Da’ish will release some of the captives for financial ransoms reaching 1000-3000 dollars each.

About 2700 Christian and Izidi women are still in the hands of Da’ish organization, as some sources expected.

American Muslim youth community organizes annual halal food festival

97bcb1d1a634a98005a646a08dd7be9fFor four years, the American Muslim youth community center has organized an annual halal food festival to draw Muslim families and also to enhance friendship ties with non-Muslims.

This year’s festival, held Saturday at Rowland Park, drew vendors from Central Jersey, New York City and even as far away as Ohio. Thousands of people attended and they included many local and immigrant Muslims as well as non-Muslims.

Crescent Foods, a company that sells halal meats, had an information booth at the festival. The company sells meat to select Walmart stores in several Mid-Atlantic states, as well as Central Jersey. East Brunswick Flemington, Freehold and Phillipsburg Walmarts carry the firm’s foods. The company’s products have no added antibiotics, no animal by-products, and no added hormones. The animals eat all vegetarian diets, are raised cage-free and are treated well, the company literature states.

Food has a way of bringing people together, even across bitterly drawn lines. “Want to appeal to all communities,” said Sami Shaban, one of the organizers of the event. “For instance, we want all Muslims to come together over delicious food. But we want more people to come. We want all of South Brunswick to come and taste our delicious food.”

Vendors at the fair were selling food from many countries, from Turkey and the Middle East to traditional American items such as burgers and fried chicken. Much of the food was grilled, including corn, and several vendors were selling meat and rice dishes. Shaban was particularly proud that the Halal Guys, a New York company with 42,000 Facebook followers, was selling food at the festival. Shaban expected 4,000 attendees by the end of Saturday.

From New Brunswick, 25 Burgers were there, serving an all-Halal menu. In fact, that vendor was handing out menus with 35 burgers on it.

“It’s great food,” Salman Tarar said. “It’s Halal, it’s good. We will definitely come again next year.”

The strong Muslim tradition of charity also was present at the festival. Shaban’s mother, Najwa Alsadi, who owns a school bus company in Totowa, and her grandson were selling snacks and toys for the second year to raise money for Syrian refugees. Last year, they sold $2,000 worth of toys and snacks, and Alsadi matched that dollar for dollar. Then they found another company that would match their $4,000, enabling them to donate $8,000 for Syrian relief to Islamic Relief, which works with UNICEF to get aid to Syrian refugee and Palestinians in Gaza. They hoped to do at least as well this year.

Two international relief organizations also had booths at the festival: Islamic Relief and Helping Hand. Both have operations around the world, engaged in micro-financing, disaster relief, orphan sponsorship, health care and education.

Nottingham Muslim Women’s Organization holds annual family fun day

269f9b041e7d0b1f6974404b62771b9aPromoting cohesion in the British society, a group of Muslim women in England’s Nottingham organized its annual family fun day on Saturday, inviting locals to come together, according to news agencies.

The event was organized by the Radford-based Muslim Women’s Organization at Radford recreation ground.
The family event featured face-painting, eyebrow-threading, Mehndi, which is henna tattoos, Asian food including biryani, kebabs, pakora and samosas.

It also included a visit from members of Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust and a bouncy castle.

The fun event has been praised by the city’s officials.

“It’s good for the family coming out and enjoy themselves,” Naseem Khosar, administrator of the Muslim Women’s Organization, told Nottingham post.

“It’s a good idea that brings the community together.”

Besides serving Asian food, tea and coffee were offered. A sports day with activities including a tug-of-war and three-legged-race were on the program too.

Called “Good Deeds Notts”, the campaign aims to get 1,000 individuals doing random acts of kindness over the next 12 months.

“We need that sort of campaign,” Sultana Syed, chair of the organization, said.

“It’s an annual event now and this is our fourth one,” she added.

Held for the fourth time, the annual event had gone “from strength-to-strength” each year, said Sakina Yusufali, development worker with the organization.

Wales-based Pie manufacturer aims to launch halal products in Middle East

7dfc8d8d4563180ed71bf07e00aec29aThe Wales-based pie and pasty manufacturer Lewis Pies, is targeting the Middle East after securing a new sales and distribution agreement with the Yearsley Group to export.

The pie firm aims to push its halal products out of the UK and into new markets, starting with the Middle East, but also looking at European countries with large Muslim communities.

Wilf Lewis, managing director of Lewis Pies, said: “We are extremely proud of our halal range and its instant popularity. This has provided us with the opportunity to expand further into new markets such as the Middle East. It is important for us as a business to expand and make these products available, where there is a demand in the market. Yearsley are the perfect partner to help us achieve this and, in turn, we will assist them in strengthening their offering.

From his part, Adrian Hall, from Yearsley Group, said: “We are extremely pleased to have been offered this opportunity to work with Lewis Pies and are confident in the Crescent range of products being a huge success.”

10 Drowned Towns You Can Visit

By Bess Lovejoy

There are so many places lost beneath the waves around the world, you could create an alternate atlas of watery wreckages. But during the 20th century, the number of towns underwater increased exponentially as hydroelectricity projects submerged some to create power for many. These drowned towns were intentionally flooded behind new dams, their buildings removed or dismantled, and their residents displaced.

In recent years, droughts have allowed some of these towns to re-emerge. Others remain underwater. Here are 10 haunting waterworlds.

1. Villa Epecuén, Argentina


Photo:  Santiago Matamoro, Wikimedia // CC BY 3.0

It’s now a haunting stretch of pale rubble and skeletal trees, but in the middle of the 20th century Villa Epecuén was one of Argentina’s most popular tourist spots. The once-charming village was developed in the 1920s to take advantage of the therapeutic salt waters of Lago Epecuén, some 340 miles southwest of Buenos Aires, and the population peaked in the 1970s at some 5,000 people. But in 1985, tragedy struck: heavy rains broke a nearby earthen dam, inundating the town and its hundreds of businesses.

The salty waters covered the town for about 25 years, until they began to recede as part of a long-term weather pattern, revealing salt-encrusted trees and the carcasses of vehicles and buildings. (The well-preserved town slaughterhouse is particularly eerie-looking.) In recent years, the remains of the town have been subject to a tourism push from local officials, who say it feels a bit like Pompeii. Villa Epecuén even has a single resident: the octogenarian Pablo Novak, who moved inland when the town was flooded but never entirely abandoned the place. (You can see a documentary about his amazing determination here.)

2. Shi Cheng, China

Beneath the waters of Lake Qiando in China’s Zhejiang province lies the 600-year-old “Lion City” of Shi Cheng. Flooded in 1959 to create a reservoir and hydroelectric station for the nearby city of Hangzhou, its beautiful ruins have been surprisingly well-preserved by the water, which reportedly protects the buildings better than if they were exposed to sun, wind, and rain.

The ruins were relatively unknown until a Chinese government expedition in 2001, which found a small city of wide streets, five entrance gates, and 265 archways featuring ornate stonework carvings of lions, dragons, and phoenixes, as well as historical inscriptions dating back to 1777. But although Shi Cheng gets most of the attention, it’s just one of the towns flooded to create Hangzhou’s reservoir: the even more ancient He Cheng was established in 208, and also disappeared beneath the waves in 1959.

Local diving companies regularly offer tours of the Shi Cheng ruins, although since they’re not well-mapped, the dives are recommended for advanced divers only. Now’s a good time to visit the flooded jewels beneath Lake Qiando, which could see more traffic after a proposed tunnel through the lake is completed. There are rumors of other proposed developments aimed at helping tourists see the ruins. The $6.4 million submarine built for exploring the lake was completed in 2004 but has never been used, thanks to opposition from local officials.

Related:  15 Ancient Cities You Need to Visit Right Now

3. Vilarinho das Furnas, Portugal


Photo: Benkeboy, Wikimedia // CC BY SA-3.0

It’s like something out of a short story: a tiny but vibrant village, known for its remarkably democratic way of life, is flooded by the local power company to create hydroelectricity for the region. As they prepare for the end, villagers gather up stories, artifacts, and memories to create a museum memorializing their old town and its communal way of life.

That’s what happened at the 2000-year-old town of Vilarinho da Furna in Portugal’s Minho region. According to oral accounts, the village is said to have been founded by Romans in the 1st century CE, and flourished for two millennia before being flooded by the Portuguese Electricity Company in 1972. In 1981, a museum dedicated to the submerged town opened in São João do Campo; the building was constructed using stones from some of the village’s old houses, and displays artifacts from the town. But that’s not all: remnants from the town can be seen during dry periods in the spring and fall, when water levels in the reservoir recede, and the remnants of walls, windows, and doors of the town re-emerge.

4. St. Thomas, Nevada

Located 50 miles northeast of Las Vegas, St. Thomas was established in 1865 as a Mormon outpost before becoming an agricultural community briefly known for producing cantaloupes and asparagus. In the 1930s, after the creation of the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead flooded, washing over the entire town. Today, during times of drought, the foundations of St. Thomas reappear — although each time they re-emerge, more of the structures have disappeared. In 2005, parts of 40 buildings were visible, including remnants of an old school and ice cream parlor. According to the National Park Service, much of the town is visible right now due to the current drought.

Related: Road Trip: Searching for the Civil War Ghost Towns of Dixie

5. Potosi, Venezuela


Photo:  Junctions, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

In what remains of Potosi, Venezuela, the mildewed ruins of a gothic church sit alone in a giant field. At one point, the church was part of a vibrant Andean village with 1,200 inhabitants, but in 1985 the town was flooded when a nearby river was dammed to create a hydroelectric plant. For about 20 years, only the cross of the church’s steeple was visible above the waters, as if marking the grave of the entire city. In 2008 the waters of the reservoir began to recede due to asevere drought linked to El Niño. By 2010 the church had been completely uncovered, joining the ruins of local houses, the town square, and a cemetery, all of which can now be seen.

6. Port Royal, Jamaica

They used to call it the “Wickedest City on Earth.” For decades in the 17th century, Port Royal was known for its rum, prostitutes, and pirates, who used the town’s strategic location in the middle of the Caribbean as their base for plundering Spanish treasure fleets. But in 1692 the city was hit with a massive earthquake, which destroyed some buildings and sucked others into the sand. The tsunami that followed drenched the town, swallowing up 33 acres for good. In all, at least 2,000 people were killed. Today, much of the once-scandalous city lies 40 feet below water. Since the 1950s, divers have been exploring the ruins, which are said to be remarkably complete. As Atlas Obscura notes, access from the government is required to dive. For those who don’t want to get wet, many of the artifacts recovered over the years can be seen at the Museums of History and Ethnography at the Institute of Jamaica in Kingston.

Related:  The Famously Beautiful Fjords and Eerie Ghost Towns of Greenland

7. Catskills, New York

New York may have the highest concentration of drowned towns in the U.S., thanks to the number that were submerged to supply thirsty New York City. Between 1910 and 1928,dozens of farm villages in the Catskills were flooded to create reservoirs for the Big Apple. The creation of the Ashokan Reservoir, which began operating in 1915, required the abandonment and flooding of about a dozen hamlets alone. On the cusp of being displaced, thousands of residents were asked to help clear out their homes and businesses, and in some cases even dig up their relatives and move their bodies. Today, some claim that when water levels are low, the tops of the churches, schools, barns, and orchards drowned by the creation of Ashokan can still be seen. During a major drought in 2002, building foundations and old wells were revealed. Direct access to the reservoir has been limited since 9/11, but you can still catch a glimpse of the structures from nearby bridges.

The Catskills are also home to perhaps the most ironically named drowned town of them all: Neversink. The town was one of two flooded in 1953 for the creation of the Neversink reservoir. The other town displaced to create the new water supply was named Bittersweet.

8. Monument City, Indiana

In 2012, a severe drought  in the Midwest revealed the remnants of Monument City, including the foundations of houses and bricks from the old schoolhouse, long since demolished. The tiny town (estimated population: 30), established in 1875, was one of three flooded to create the Salamonie reservoir in 1965. After water levels fell by 12 feet in 2012, locals began flocking to the area to take remnants of the tiny town, before the Department of Natural Resources finally stepped in to offer supervised tours. The reservoir was originally created to help prevent the flooding of other towns. When water levels in the reservoir are low, the remnants of the town can again be seen.

9. Flooded Belfry, Kalyazin, Russia


Photo: Michael Clarke Stuff, Flickr // CC BY SA-2.0

In 1939, Joseph Stalin gave orders to flood the 12th-century town of Kalyazin, Russia to build the Uglich reservoir. The waters submerged several medieval buildings, including two monasteries, but the Kalyazin Bell Tower, also known as the “Flooded Belfry,” is still looming above the Volga. At 244 feet high, the 19th-century campanile is one of the tallest Orthodox Christian structures in the world. (It looks a bit like a many-layered wedding cake.) Authorities have reinforced the tower and built a small artificial island around it, turning it into a popular spot for swimmers and tourists. Amazingly, Orthodox Christian services are still held inside the tower several times a year.

10. Church of Mediano, Spain


Photo:  Juan R. Lascorz, Wikimedia // CC BY SA-3.0

Spain has a number of drowned towns, but one of the most notable sights is the Church of Mediano (above) in La Fueva, Huesca. The church, which dates to the late 16th century, was submerged in 1974 to create the Mediano Reservoir. The tip of the steeple is always visible, even when the reservoir’s levels are full. Intrepid divers used to be able to explore both the inside and out, but the inside has been boarded up for safety reasons. Elsewhere in the country, in Catalonia, the ruins of the 1,000-year-old village of Sant Romà de Sau(below) are also visible when water levels in a nearby reservoir drop, and include their own atmospheric church.

Vera Verinak became first Ukrainian Muslim to memorize Qur’an

d80673f5fd5c11114a8e70c124e7c85eA woman, who reverted to Islam 17 years ago, has become the first Ukrainian to memorize the Holy Qur’an in full, overcoming language barriers and time constraint.

“I started by learning Arabic language, so I used to write the verses and translate their meanings to understand and memorize them,” said Vera Verinak, whose new name carries the meaning of Iman or faith.

“This took me long time as I was a university student, before getting busy with work, marriage and children.”

Learning Arabic language was a great help for the ambitious Muslim revert, she added.

“After learning Arabic, the Islamic cultural center in Kiev put a schedule to help me memorize the Qur’an which helped me to memorize it within nine months only,” she said.

Vera, who helped her brother, mother and four sisters to revert to Islam, has been helping young people seeking knowledge about the fastest growing religion.

Vera, 35, noted that she did not expect to succeed in memorizing the Qur’an in full, especially after considering language barriers and lack of time.

Achieving her life dream of memorizing the Qur’an, the Muslim mother says she is keen on teaching Muslims the Holy Qur’an as well as spreading true image of Islam among non-Muslims.

A Ukrainian young revert, Jana, said she took the decision to revert to Islam after meeting Vera who convinced her that “Islam was both a faith and a way of life.”

As of 2012, there was an estimated 500,000 Muslims in Ukraine and about 300,000 of them were of Crimean Tatars. Today Islam is the largest minority religion in Ukraine, coming next to Christianity.


Indian Muslim Denied Entry to Class for Hijab

f1a965337c647a6a9e09281ac5672e8cA private school in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh denied entry to a Muslim girl in the classroom for wearing a hijab, with the school’s administration claiming the decision was taken not to discriminate between children on the basis of dress.

“Many girls want to study and practice their religion by wearing the hijab, but face a lot of difficulty in schools,” Nahid Lari, member of Uttar Pradesh Commission for Protection of Child Rights, said.

“They discriminate with Muslim girls by not allowing them to wear a headscarf.”

The dilemma started when 9-year-old Farheen Fatima could not sit inside her classroom in St. Joseph Inter College in Lucknow town as the school administration denied her entry while wearing headscarf.

Farheen also told that the school is being run by a Hindu family and not by Christian missionaries.

“The school has its own dress code. And there should not be any discrimination on the basis of religion in the school. We are not concerned about the religion of our students,” N. Emenuel, principal of the school, said.

“Farheen and her parents were informed about dress code in the school at the time of admission.”

However, Farheen and her mother stated that they were not informed about dress code banning hijab during the admission process.

“She was wearing headscarf at the time of admission process. Her photograph with headscarf was affixed even on her admission form,” said Waqar Fatima, mother of Farheen.

“They should have told us earlier that she will not be allowed with a headscarf in the school.”

Farheen informed that she was not allowed to go inside the classroom, the very next day of her admission.

She spent her whole day sitting inside the library, only to be asked to call her parents on the next day.

They were informed that Farheen will only be allowed to sit inside the classroom without her headscarf.

“We gave an application to the school administration asking them to allow Farheen to attend classes wearing her headscarf,” her mother added.

“They never replied to our letter. The school principal even refused to give anything in writing on dress code.”

Another School

As the new went viral, Lari, visited the school and inquired from other students about Farheen’s headscarf.

She asked them whether they feel discriminated because of the presence of Farheen in the school.

“Not a single student said they had any problem with Farheen wearing headscarf,” Lari said.

Farheen’s family has now decided their daughter will transfer to another school.

But, the commission has recommended harsh action against school management.

District Collector of Lucknow Raj Shekhar has ordered an inquiry against the school.

The incident of banning Muslim students due to their religious beliefs is not the first in India.

In 2009, the Supreme Court of India directed a Christian school based in central India to reinstate a class 10 Muslim student, Mohammed Salim, who was sacked after he refused to shave insisting it was part of his religious belief.

Muslims account for 180 million of India’s 1.1 billion people, the world’s third-largest Islamic population after those of Indonesia and Pakistan.

Islam sees hijab as an obligatory code of dress, not a religious symbol displaying one’s affiliations.

Muslims have long complained of being discriminated against in all walks of life in Hindu-majority India.

Official figures indicate that Muslims, who make up around 13 percent of India’s population, are lagging behind in literacy.

Muslims also complain of being discriminated against in jobs.

They account for less than seven percent of public service employees, only five percent of railways workers, around four percent of banking employees, and there are only 29,000 Muslims in India’s 1.3 million-strong military.

Source : On Islam

Hamburg Friday Prayers’ leader discusses ‘shortcomings’ of UDHR

udhrHujjat al-Islam Ramazani-Gilani, stated that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has several shortcomings, one of which is due to its lack of proof, as it is a human-made and not a divine document.

The Friday prayers’ leader and the imam of the Islamic Centre of German city of Hamburg, Hujjat al-Islam Dr. Reza Ramazani-Gilani, stated that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has several shortcomings, one of which is due to its lack of proof, as it is a human-made and not a divine document.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a declaration adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948. The Declaration consists of thirty articles which have been elaborated in subsequent international treaties, regional human rights instruments, national constitutions, and other laws.

The provisions of this declaration consist of a series of slogans, and the principles, proofs and arguments have stated nowhere, even in the endnotes and attachments related to the declaration.

He said that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights claims to be related to all of mankind, locations and times, but it has been codified due to the prevailing in the society of the time it was formulated. It should also refer to the reasons, sources and principles of these issues as well.

Hamburg’s Friday prayers’ leader said that all human beings, and from the perspective of dignity, all rights are equal and stated that in terms of the philosophical foundations and intellectual arguments in regard to the issues which evoke different and conflicting views should be clarified.

Hujjat al-Islam Ramazani-Gilani added that writing a series of rights without taking the necessary fundamentals and resources into consideration is intellectually unacceptable. Thus, it is necessary for these shortcomings to be seriously considered.

His Eminence said that only if human rights are based on a credible collection of rules and regulations and not created by mankind they can be acceptable. “From the perspective of Islam, human rights cannot be achieved by the rules of interpretation of several people but only through the laws of God,” he said.

He pointed out other shortcomings of the Declaration of Human Rights, adding it does not have any enforcement, but it is a series of legal materials that have been put together without any guarantee.