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City of Brass

City of Brass

February 2009 Archives

Taliban’s Mullah Omar changes the rules

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is an interesting development: The militants active in North and South Waziristan agencies have been directed by Mulla Omar to immediately stop their attacks on the Pakistani security forces.  In a letter to the militants, who have forged a […]

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Starbucks: jihadi java, the drink of dhimmis

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

FACT: All Starbucks outlets in the Middle East are operated by MH Alshaya WLL, a Kuwaiti company. FACT: Kuwait plays host to many small jihadist cells, including members of Al Qaeda from neighboring Saudi Arabia FACT: Alshaya also operates in […]

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an honor killing or “only” domestic violence?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The horrific decapitation murder of Aasiya Zubair by her husband Muzzammil Hassan last week – which spurred nationwide sermons in US mosques about domestic violence – was a wake-up call to the muslim-American community about the taboo subject of spousal […]

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VIDEO: President Obama’s non-SOTU and Gov Jindal’s response

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The Presidential Address was covered on Twitter of course, via hashtag #nsotu, whereas Jindal’s response was tagged #jindalwarmupact. What struck me was how much emphasis Jindal put on his own biography at the outset – yes, he’s clearly running for […]

Khutba on domestic violence by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This khutbah (sermon) was delivered by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf of the Zaytuna Institute in San Francisco on Friday 20th February as part of the nationwide effort to raise awareness about domestic violence within muslim communities. Related: khutbah on domestic violence […]

Baha’i persecution in Iran

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Imagine an ethno-religious group that is treated as second-class citizens by their host country, and actively persecuted, with accusations of divided loyalties and sympathies to enemies of the state. Arabs in Israel? no – the Baha’i in Iran, who have […]

does religion cause violence?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Sunny Hundal makes a very insightful comment: Conflict has always been part of human nature; what we have are codes of conduct that make sense and sound good in theory but always end up being fitted around people’s own political […]

Friday Khutbah (Sermon) on Domestic Violence in the Muslim Community

The following is a guest post by Hesham Hassaballa, and is the text of the friday khutbah (sermon) he delivered this afternoon as part of a nationwide effort to focus on domestic violence by muslim Americans today. We praise God, […]

Ayman Nour released from prison in Egypt

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Excellent, if surprising, news for democracy and political reform in Egypt – dissident and one-time opposition party candidate for President against Hosni Mubarak, was released quite abruptly from prison yesterday: Mr. Nour, a charismatic political leader who challenged the governing […]

American Muslims Call for Swift Action Against Domestic Violence

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The following is a press release written today by a group of muslim bloggers, journalists, and media people including myself. The idea is to coordinate the friday khutbas (sermons) in as many American mosques as possible this week to focus […]

Muslim & S. Asian Women’s Groups Condemn Beheading of Aasiya Hassan

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is a joint press release by Turning Point for Women and Families and the Domestic Harmony Foundation regarding the brutal murder of Aasiya Hassan last Thursday in Buffalo, NY. Below that is a press release from the Peaceful Families […]

The Taliban win: Shari’a for Swat

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

There’s no other way to interpret this news, except simply as “the terrorists have won” in the full sense of the word: Pakistan’s government has agreed to restore sharia, or Islamic law, in the Swat valley and neighbouring areas of […]

Will George Clooney convert to Islam?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Along with the entire nation of Pakistan, I’m fascinated by this story: He is Hollywood’s most eligible bachelor. She is an outspoken poet and journalist born into Pakistan’s greatest political dynasty. What, then, could spark a bigger media circus than […]

halal pizza

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

What happens when a Domino’s pizza decides to serve to all-halal menu? The end of Western civilization, of course: Chris Yates, 29, a hospital worker living in Moseley, Birmingham, said he was told he couldn’t have a ‘Meteor’ pizza, topped […]

reflections on technology and the hajj II

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is a guest post by my friend Aamer Jamali. This is the second post in a series. Having just returned from Hajj, a number of anecdotes stick out in my mind which best serve to illustrate the role that modern […]

word cloud and text of the Gettysburg Address

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

On November 19th, 1863 President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, at the dedication of the Gettysburg Cemetery where 51,000 soldiers (both Union and Confederate) were killed, wounded, or missing just a few months earlier. In honor pf President Lincoln’s […]

The God Bus

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

An atheist group has taken out ads on buses in the UK with catchy slogans poking some good-natured fun at believers. While these have predictably generated some anger and tension, I am entranced by the free speech and market ingenuity […]

reflections on technology and the hajj

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This is a guest post by my friend Taha Raja. Part one in a series. How has technology affected the Hajj? For many hard core believers, Hajj represents a pilgrimage that needs to be preserved for what it was envisioned […]

Bush’s War on Terror, Obama’s WOMBAT

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Given that our President is a pretty sharp fellow, it’s not surprising that he’s also realized that the “War on Terror” branding needs to be retired: What’s being sought is a more precise phrase that can recast the U.S. government’s […]

Amazon’s new Kindle 2 is iPhone sexy

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Today Amazon.com has officially announced the second-generation Kindle ebook-reader, and it looks amazing. The original version was pretty clunky-looking, which didn’t stop Amazon from selling (by some estimates) over half a million of them. The selling point was really how […]

Pastor Joel Osteen warns about pork

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Pastor Joel Osteen gives an amazing sermon about pork and shellfish. He made changes to his own diet, not just for health reasons, but also to honor God: It’s a compelling and educational lecture about why pigs and shellfish are […]

liberal interventionism vs imperialism

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

At Talk Islam, I have (another) healthy debate with Abu Noor about the Iraq War, pragmatic liberal intervention, and imperialism. We end up debating the merits of interventionism a lot over at TI, don’t we?

CBO says stimulus will work

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has analyzed President Obama’s economic stimulus plan and concluded that it will have a definite positive impact in the short term, though with diminishing returns: In an analysis of the $900 billion version of the […]

Pakistan releases AQ Khan

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

It is true that Osama bin Laden is the most wanted terrorist alive. But someday, a terrorist attack will occur that will make OBL’s lifetime achievements pale in comparison, because it will use a nuclear weapon. When thta day comes, […]

Presidential M&Ms

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

This story about President Obama’s first ride aboard Air Force One buried the most important part at the very end: Also unclear is when the new M&Ms will arrive. Air Force One has long stocked boxes with the presidential seal […]

the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

At the National Prayer Breakfast this morning, President Obama took the opportunity announce the creation of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. From the transcript of his remarks: Instead of driving us apart, our varied beliefscan […]

replacing the War on Terror (WOT) with a WOMBAT

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

In the context of my earlier thoughts about how the muslim community can help combat extremism, one more thing occurs to me; perhaps what is also needed is a rebranding of the War on Terror. You cannot wage war against […]

President Obama quotes Hadith

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

At the White House National Prayer Breakfast this morning, President Obama quoted (among other things) a Hadith of the Holy Prophet Mohammed SAW: We know too that whatever our differences, there is one law that binds all great religions together. […]

Muslimah Media Watch

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I’d like to highlight one of the essential blogs in the Islamsphere – Muslim Media Watch (MMW). It’s a group weblog that tracks issues related to women and Islam, and features a broad stable of writers. One of the MMW […]

how can muslims combat extremism?

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

I’ve often dismissed the idea that muslims in the West have any obligation to apologize for or routinely condemn on demand the actions of the extremist minorities who commit acts of terror in the name of the faith they claim […]

Obama: “I screwed up.”

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Indeed, change has come to the White House. Our President is able to admit to mistakes: Barack Obama, the US president, has admited he made a “mistake” following the withdrawal of his nominee for US health secretary amid a controversy over […]

breaking: Tom Daschle withdraws from consideration

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

UPDATE: Tom Daschle has officially withdrawn his name from consideration. I heard it on Twitter first, actually. It turns out that Tom Daschle has even more explaining to do: Daschle’s tax problems were even more substantial than earlier reported. The […]

Israel censors Al Jazeera

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

During the Gaza war, Al Jazeera was the only news outfit able to report on the carnage from the field, by virtue of actually being on-location, while the international media was forced to watch from afar by the Israeli government. […]

Darfur vs Gaza: African muslims are worth less than Arab muslims

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

Ali A. Rizvi, a muslim blogger, asks the hard questions: Where are the large-scale protests and outrage from the Muslim community over the senseless deaths and rape of hundreds of thousands of poverty-ridden African Muslims? Why is there such a […]

Obama mail

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

President Obama’s email address is the new status symbol in Washington DC – and the circle of who knows his email address is very, very selective indeed. There’s a great article in the NYT about Obama’s email, which includes this […]

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