Further to this and this, more interesting testimony from the BC Human Rights Tribunal hearing of the Canadian Islamic Congress complaint against Maclean's magazine and Mark Steyn.
The Canadian Islamic Congress called Islamic history professor Dr. Andrew Rippin as a witness, ostensibly to demonstrate how "wrong" Mark Steyn is about Islam.
Two observations, first of all. For one, as another Islamic history expert - Dr. Daniel Pipes - points out in this interview, there is no one single interpretation of Islam.
Secondly, Dr. Rippin is not a Muslim, which certainly does not diminish his scholarly credentials, but imagine the reaction if Maclean's had called a non-Muslim as a witness to buttress Steyn's argument. Furthermore, as a non-Muslim, I suspect Dr. Rippin would be especially cautious before a Human Rights Tribunal to avoid anything that might be taken as remotely critical of Islam, lest he end up as a defendant himself
As it turns out, Dr. Rippin may have inadvertantly assisted the magazine's case. From Andrew Coyne:
4:28 PM Porter to cross-examine. Quoting from Rippin's work to show that not all Muslims share his moderate, flexible view of the religion — particularly, the Wahabbi. Answer: yes, there are many different strands of Islam, from very liberal to very conservative. So we're all agreed on that - all, except Elmasry and co., who purport to speak for "the Muslim community."
Reading together from Wahab's stern proscriptions on various types of behaviour ("10 things that make you not a Muslim"), written in the 17th century. Other Muslims disagreed, saying these were matters best left to God to decide. It's a perennial debate among Muslims, Rippin says. But given new life by Saudi cleric Ibn Baaz in 20th century. They're reading one of Rippin's essays on different types of Islam. Porter suggests Wahabbism is today a "powerful trend" among the Muslim community. Rippin agrees.
This trend rejects the separation of church and state, Porter suggests. Rippin says that's too simplistic. But, Porter replies, "you'd have to agree it suggests a deep involvement of state powers in controlling the lives of its members… (pause) cause that's what you said on the next page." He agrees.
More from Ezra Levant:
Andrew Rippin would make an interesting professor. He's honest; he doesn't dance around questions, at least any more than any other academic would do simply by nature.
Julian Porter doesn't have a tough job; Rippin has left enough of a paper trail in which he discusses radical Islam, that it's not hard to find Rippin saying, in writing, what Porter wants to hear from him: That there are indeed radical sects of Islam out there, political sects, that demand that their adherents colour their every action with their religious ideology.
Did Faisal Joseph even Google this guy? Other than a shared interest in expressive facial har, was there any other criterion for his retainer?
More here, here, and here. At least the CIC didn't call Sheik Younus Kathrada as a witness - although as Tarek Fatah points out, they probably had the connections to easily find the Sheik:
...I am told Naiyer Habib is the father of Adnan Habib. Adnan Habib is a Vancouver lawyer, and the legal counsel for the BC Muslim Association.
Earlier this year the BC Muslim Association hired a new Imam. Guess who? None other than the discraced hate-monger Sheikh Younus Kathrada!
Thee Imam who preached that Jews were "brothers of monkeys and swine" is now lecturing at Masjid al-Iman in Victoria run by an organsiation whose legal counsel is the son of Naiyer Habib!
Convoluted associations? yes. Guilt by association? Probably, but it is not me who is saying all Muslims are one organic body that weeps whenever the boy-band is insulted.
Hmm.. it seems to me that calling Jews "brothers of monkeys and swine" might fall under this:
...likely to expose a person or a group or class of persons to hatred or contempt
Posted by: Rob Breakenridge