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City of Brass

City of Brass

January 1970 Archives

The Secular Right?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The historic victory of Barack Obama has left the various factions within the Republican Party scrambling to lay claim to conservatism’s mantle. I for one am rooting for the technocrats at The Next Right, the pragmatists at The American Conservative, […]

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Defense Gates – Secretary Robert redux

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Obama will renominate currently-serving Secretary of Defense Robert Gates to the same position within his Administration. This is a pretty high-profile move that I think speaks volumes about Obama’s willingness to put policy and experience first and ideology second. Gates […]

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anti-Semitism and Islamophobia

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Sumbul Ali-Karamali, author of the book The Muslim Next Door, writes of an encounter with someone who subscribes to the fallacy that Islam and muslims are inherently anti-Semitic: I recently spoke on Islam and my new book at a local […]

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Save Hoder: more on Derakshan

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Talk Islam and City of Brass seem to have been the first to report on Iranian blogfather Hossein Derakshan’s arrest in Tehran last week, but the A-list bloggers are now awakening to the story, as are some of the journalist […]

Mikael Jackson: Ya Wanna Be Starting Something

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I’m not particularly keen to judge another man’s faith, so I pass no judgement on Michael Jackson’s conversion to Islam. However, I will note that Islam is big enough to contain me and Jackson within itself. Check out the discussion […]

Blogger Hossein Derakshan arrested in Iran

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Celebrated blogger Hossein Derakshan is literally the godfather of the Iranian blogsphere. Iran is one of those countries where speaking out requires courage, and where speech is anything but free. He has been living in Canada recently, but returned to […]

Planet Islam

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I am pleased to announce the launch of Planet Islam, an aggregator of posts from blogs from around the Islamsphere, including muslim blogs as well as non-muslim ones that post on issues related to Islam and muslims. Planet Islam is […]

Attorney General Eric Holder

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Obama has announced another top-level appointment, Eric Holder, who served as deputy Attorney-General under Clinton and now will be (pending Senate confirmation) the nation’s lead lawman. The relevant and important information about Holder is his record and reputation: A New […]

Hillary Clinton’s Foggy Bottom

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Hillary Clinton will be Secretary of State in the Obama Administration. This is significant for many reasons, not least of which because Hillary is perfect for the job and is supremely qualified for it. Arguably, the more important reason will […]

Christians do takfir on Obama

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Takfir is what excommunication is called in Islam – the process of declaring someone to be outside the faith. This is a pernicious concept because it is usually used by self-appointed guardians of the faith to try and impose their […]

Oxford Islamic Studies Online: What is Shari’a?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

One of the singular best references about Islam, in all its complexity and diversity and nuance, is an online and free collection of essays and reference articles: Oxford Islamic Studies Online. It builds on the classical Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam, […]

Muslims and modernity

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

At Talk Islam, a great discussion has ensured (as tends to happen over there) about analogizing between Islam and other religions, especially when talking about “reformations” or about labels. Abu Noor points out, those both within and without Islam that […]

India lands on the moon

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is truly a historic achievement for India and the world: India’s first unmanned lunar probe has landed successfully on the moon, a milestone for the country’s 45-year-old space programme. The moon-landing on Friday is part of a two-year mission […]

Fisher-Price “Dawah Doll” brings the deen

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Awesome. Parents are outraged about the messages they’rehearing from a doll. It’s Fisher-Price’s “Little Mommy Real Loving BabyCuddle and Coo” doll. Some people claim they can hear it mumble “Satan is king” in one track; then clearly speak “Islam is […]

From 52 to 48 with love

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is simply beautiful – a collection of photos between “52 blue” and “48 red”. There’s no better example of purple politics than this – and it’s exactly in line with what Obama has been talking about, about there being […]

Obama’s private photos from Election Night

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Obama’s private election night photos are up on Flickr – I really love this sequence in particular.

The Obama mandate: executive order

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I argued earlier that the evidence for an Obama mandate is compelling, especially in comparison to President Bush, who claimed a mandate and political capital after the 2004 election. Some may ask why a mandate matters, or that the margin […]

playing with fire

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Newsweek is doing a seven-part story on the 2008 campaign which provides all manner of fascinating behind-the-scenes perspectives. The installment on the period of time spanning the debates is notable for the discussion of how the Otherization of Obama proceeded […]

Mandate – Obama takes North Carolina

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Incredible. North Carolina is now officially for Obama, bringing his EV total to 364 and total number of states flipped from red to blue to nine. Missouri is the sole remaining state to be counted, with a margin of mere […]

The first urban president

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Christof at Intermodality blog points out that Obama is the first Urban president in modern times, whose home is within walking distance of public transport: Obama lives only four miles from the center of the third largest city of the […]

BREAKING: Rahm accepts Chief of Staff job

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Emannuel Rahm has accepted Obama’s offer to be Chief of Staff: “The chief” is sometimes known as the second most powerful person in Washington. The job has vast authority, as the boss of the hundreds of aides who work directly […]

Nixon and China redux: Only Obama can go to Iran

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

A young woman votes in the second runoff of the Iranian Parliamentary elections this past April (via Faith Today). Iran is not our enemy. The reaction from Iranians to Obama’s election has been one of cautious optimism and anticipation: Iranians […]

Post-election musings

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

First, let’s see how I fared – my Electoral College prediction of 310 EVs for Obama was obviously on the pessimistic side. Still, I called this election for Obama last Friday, so for me it was never a question of […]

Yes We Did: word cloud of Obama’s victory speech

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Word cloud from Wordle.net of President-elect Barack Obama’s victory speech at Grant Park, Chicago, on November 4th 2008. This is history.

Obama has already won tonight

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

It is now 9PM EST and polls have closed in the critical states IN,VA, GA, FL, OH, NC, PA, MO, and CO (among others). VA is neck and neck, NC is marginally Obama and IN is marginally McCain. GA has been called for […]

Indiana results

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Polls just closed in Indiana. Results will be posted to the Indiana Secretary of State’s website. Manically refresh that page starting now…

NH reporting: Obama ahead 2:1 so far

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Voting began in New Hampshire as early as midnight last night, so it’s not surprising that the earliest results are already in. In Coos County, Barack Obama leads John McCain 15-6, and in Carroll County Obama is ahead 17-10. So, […]

ignore the exit polls

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

With one hour to go before the polls close in Indiana and the first returns start trickling in, the  exit polls are already being leaked. Ignore them. Mark Blumenthal notes that there are numerous problems with exit polls, including overstating […]

Election projection: Obama 305, McCain 233

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Happy election day! (Some crazy towns in New Hampshire started voting at midnight). Courtesy of Nate Silver’s simulations, here’s how McCain might win. The most plausible (but still improbable) scenario: Obama takes all the Gore and Kerry states, and McCain […]

Reihan Salam says it’s gonna be all right

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Reihan Salam, poet-pundit at The American Scene, provides some perspective on today: here’s the thing: America is a strange, diverse, sprawling country, and our elections reflect that fact. There are loyal black Democrats in California who will turn out for […]

Obama will win Nevada

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

In my projection, I gave McCain Nevada by default without really thinking about it. However, looking at the poll trends, it looks clear that Nevada is not even going to be close. Nevada has 5 electoral votes so it won’t […]

Beliefnet.com exit poll

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

If you haven’t already done so, please do take Beliefnet’s exit poll – and chime in here on comments with how you voted and why, if you like.

Obama’s hopes on the Hoosiers

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

In my projection, I detailed why I think Obama might pull an upset win in Indiana, a statet hat went for Bush over Kerry by 20 points and hasn’t voted Blue since 1964. It should be noted that after voting […]

Obama casting his vote

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I’m watching Obama cast his vote at a school in Chicago live on TV right now. It’s taking him forever – how long does it take to mark the “straight democratic ticket” ? I think it’s wonderful Obama has taken […]

Refuting Obsession: Jews on First

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

As I noted in my statement on free speech, the best answer to bad speech is not to restrict speech, but more speech. In other words, refute it, don’t silence it. This is why in my coverage of the Obsession […]

Who did you vote for and why?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Here’s your chance to chime in and share who you voted for (or will vote for tomorrow), and why. What were the issues that mattered most to you? Take Beliefnet’s exit poll and tell the world! And let’s see how […]

wretched savage barbaric murdering evil obscene damned

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Believe me, the title of this post is mild praise compared to what these subhuman animals deserve: An Islamist rebel administration in Somalia had a 13-year-old girl stoned to death for adultery after the child’s father reported that three men […]

the gas price conspiracy

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I paid $2.24 per gallon this morning to fill up my Elantra. It’s bizarre to see a total bill for a fill-up under $25. The truth is that gas prices have decreased remarkably over the past month or two, despite […]

Previous Posts

Has Lindsay Lohan converted to Islam?
Short answer: probably not. Lindsay Lohan was recently spotted carrying a copy of the Qur'an as she left a children's daycare where she's serving her court-ordered sentence of community service. As the article at The Daily Mall helpfully ...

posted 9:52:36am May. 14, 2015 | read full post »

The Nation of Islam is keeping the peace on the streets of Baltimore #BlackLivesMatter
No news agency is bothering to cover how thousands of peaceful protestors are expressing their right of free speech in Baltimore, over the killing of Freddie Gray. Instead, the big story is the violence of the few rather than the righteousness ...

posted 2:06:45pm Apr. 28, 2015 | read full post »

G. Willow Wilson's Ms. Marvel nominated for Hugo Award - and needs YOUR support
Few people outside the fandom of science fiction and fantasy probably are aware of the Hugo Awards, but in a nutshell, they are the single most prestigious award for SF/F, launched in 1953 during the Golden Age of sci-fi. These are the Academy ...

posted 9:34:01am Apr. 17, 2015 | read full post »

Bomb blast in Karachi targets Dawoodi Bohra community
This happens almost every day in Pakistan - fanatic hirabists commit arrogant blasphemy and murder ...

posted 8:22:26am Mar. 20, 2015 | read full post »

Proof denies faith
On Reddit, someone posted the following question: "What convinces you that the Quran is the literal Word of God?" I think this is precisely the ...

posted 9:33:46am Mar. 13, 2015 | read full post »

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