Category: Islamophobia

“Internet Islam” and the Boston Bombing

Tamerlan Tsernaev

Ivan Strenski believes that the form of Islam that inspired the bombings in Boston had little to do with the religion actually practiced by devout Muslims.  The concept of “internet Islam” makes sense to me.  Strenski suggests that internet Islam is to real Islam as internet porn is to a sexual relationship with a real person.  I would suggest that internet Islam is to real Islam as computer war-game violence is to the experience of actual war.  Strenski takes a while to get to his point, but this piece, originally posted in Religious Dispatches, is well worth your time.

Was Islam Responsible for the Boston Bombings, or Was “Internet Islam”?


There must be sane ground between the Islamophobia of the right and the tender tolerance of the left. There must be some sense in which indicting the world’s billion Muslims for the crimes of the Tsarnaev brothers not only is false, but also counterproductive, on the one side. And, on the other, there must be some sense in recognizing the avowed and admitted role of religion, and Islam, in particular, in the bombings. (more…)

Terrifying love: TheCall comes to Detroit

By Alan Bean

 Leave it to TheCall to make love sound alarming, even terrifying.

 there is only one Messiah in Islam, and it’s Jesus.

All the passionate music, jubilation, and spiritual energy cannot hide the meanness of spirit that would perpetrate this kind of fraud.

TheCall hit Detroit last week.  Lou Engle’s format set the template for Rick Perry’s The Response event earlier this year and the message is straight out of the New Apostolic Reformation playbook.

On the surface, it’s all about love, compassion, and reconciliation; but, as the quotations above suggest, the vision behind the carefully choreographed emotion is dark indeed.  Especially if you’re gay . . . or Muslim.

Haroon Moghul, a Sunni Muslim from New England, flew to Detroit to experience TheCall from the inside.  His report, originally published in Religion Dispatches, appears below.

Jesus, Carpet Bomb My Heart: An Undercover Muslim in Detroit

By Haroon Moghul

I’m the one they’re after. I’m “the enemy,” the believer in the “false idol,” “the darkness” Jesus needs to cast out of America, the reason they’re spending all night in Detroit’s Ford Field, sending prayers over Michigan mosques “like sending special forces into Afghanistan.” And there are thousands of them, come because Pastor Lou Engle asked them to.

Founder of TheCall, Engle warns that an Islamic movement is rising in Dearborn, Michigan—“Ground Zero” for America’s spiritual future (and site of a new TLC reality show, All-American Muslim). When I heard the goals for TheCall Detroit—healing America in a time of crisis, accomplishing racial reconciliation, and (here’s where I come in) bringing Jesus to Muslim hearts—I figured a Muslim in the crowd could be a nice twist. (more…)