islamIslam needs to prove it’s a religion of peace

The editorial by Tawfik Hamid in the Wall Street Journal deserves serious consideration for the questions it raises.Like Mr Hamid one cannot help but be disappointed by the British denial of an entry visa to Mr Geert Wilders,the member of the Dutch parliament whose film « Fitna » caused an uproar in circles where criticism of Islam is not regarded as politically correct.This uproar reminds me of that met by Sylvain Gouguenheim ,the highly respected professor of medieval history at Ecole Normale superieure -Lyon,for his book  « Aristote au Mont Saint Michel.Les racines grecques de l’Europe chretienne » a remarkable piece of scholarship .

Interested readers will find much to think about in Christoph Luxenberg’s The Syro-Aramaic Reading Of The Koran: a contribution to the decoding of the language of the Qur’an (2007).Luxenberg,a German philologist specializing in semitic languages took to writing under a pseudonym because he was afraid of suffering from the same fate as Suleiman Bashear a scholar at Al-Nadja University in Nablus who was thrown out of a window by Muslim extremists for professing the same theories as Professor Luxenberg.

Similarly,Hellenism in Byzantium (2008) by Anthony Kaldellis  ,Dimitri Gutas’Greek Wisdom Literature in Arabic Translation (1975 ) and Hellenic Philosophy:Origin and Character (2006) by Christos Evangeliou,are « musts ».

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