Ayaan Hirsi Ali in Sydney. Picture: Amos Aikman Source: News Corp Australia
“ISLAM’S borders are bloody,” wrote the late US political scientist Samuel Huntington in 1996, “and so are its innards.” Nearly 20 years later, Huntington looks more right than ever before.
According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, at least 70 per cent of all the fatalities in armed conflicts around the world last year were in wars involving Muslims.
In 2013, there were nearly 12,000 terrorist attacks worldwide. The lion’s share were in Muslim-majority countries, and many of the others were carried out by Muslims.
By far the most numerous victims of Muslim violence — including executions and lynchings not captured in these statistics — are Muslims themselves.
Not all of this violence is explicitly motivated by religion, but a great deal of it is. I believe that it is foolish to insist, as Western leaders habitually do, that the violent acts committed in the name of Islam can somehow be divorced from the religion itself.
For more than a decade, my message has been simple: Islam is not a religion of peace.
When I assert this, I do not mean that Islamic belief makes all Muslims violent. This is manifestly not the case: There are many millions of peaceful Muslims in the world.
What I do say is that the call to violence and the justification for it are explicitly stated in the sacred texts of Islam…