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Yusuf pulls out, replaced by Namazie March 23, 2006

Posted by Rasheed Eldin in Homosexualists, Islam, Media, Responses.

Last month I mentioned that one “Sheikh Dr” Muhammad Yusuf would be the main speaker at a function in honour of the ever-odious Peter Tatchell. Via Islamophobia Watch, I learn that he pulled out and was replaced by Maryam Namazie of the Worker Communist Party of Iran.

Quite why he pulled out is not clear. Tatchell put his spin on it, and this was obediently published by the Pink News:

Liberal Islamic scholar forced to pull out of gay rights speech by Muslim leaders

A mighty claim: so where is the evidence? Who are these “senior Islamic clerics” alluded to in the article? It suffices for Tatchell & co. to make smears against Muslims and their senior figures, implying that we are an outfit of thugs.

Exactly who would bother to make death threats against this Yusuf guy anyway? Who’s even heard of him? Who cares if he wants to make his name (and money) by visiting Islamophobic bashes posing as some great Muslim reformer? And what would any respectable Muslim leader expect from trying to dissuade him? His negative views about Islam are plain and clear, and his intention to speak at the event was surely not naive.

I’m surprised at the relatively positive tone IW took towards him, given that he is quoted by Tatchell’s site (and similar quotes exist elsewhere) calling for “an Islamic Reformation – which reconciles Islam with democracy and human rights, including human rights for women and gay people”. Now I know that the chaps at IW are not Muslims, and don’t agree with our views on homosexuality, but I’m sure that they understand the subtext when the Islamophobes (of whatever stripe) call for a reformation. 

Tatchell’s claims, as quoted in Pink News, are quite astonishing: 

Sheikh Yusuf is afraid of very serious retribution to him and the ones that he loves. The threats came from people who are members of so called moderate, mainstream Muslim organisations. This shows the scale of the threat from even these moderate groups.”

He’d do well to name names. Nobody has any business making death threats. Especially when they are the only sustenance these hideous creatures get. But seriously, if there is something in it, the police should be alerted. My guess is that it’s a fabrication in aid of Tatchell’s campaign against Islam and Muslims.

Of course, Namazie was in fine form, describing “political Islam” (presumably meaning any Islam that has a reality in life) as “the fascism of today”. I don’t understand why she even bothers to deny that she’s Islamophobic.



1. jamie - April 29, 2006

hmm i cant believe ur spending your time writing a blog against gay muslims

isnt there worse things in the world u shuld be spending your time fighting

2. Rasheed Eldin - April 29, 2006

Perhaps. But what is your point?

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