CNN Tonight with ISIS Has Called for Professor’s Death
Channel: Yasir Qadhi
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of ISIS around the world now increased fears of terror attacks here at home. My next guest was targeted by ISIS after he condemned the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris. But he says another group scares him more than ISIS. Joining me now is Professor Yasser quality of Rhodes College in Memphis. Why are you more afraid of one group than the other? Which group is that?
Well done first, thanks for having me on the show. Um, fact the matter is, I've been getting death threats from two camps for the last few years, around three and a half years ago, certain segments have our own American public who are misinformed about the Islamic faith, and who assume that every Muslim is somehow a potential terrorist. They develop certain ideas about me based on a doctored audio clip. And there is this There are a number of far right radical websites that are claiming that I'm some type of stealth jihadist preacher. And based on that they launched a campaign against my employer to fire me. They inundated me with hate mail. And yes, some threats as well. The FBI got
involved and, you know, had to deal with that type of rhetoric. And then a few days ago, 10 days ago, ISIS also threatened me, because I was criticizing them. So I'm kind of getting threats from both sides of the spectrum. We have certain misinformed Americans. And we also have certain radical Muslims, and the both of them are projecting their fears of the other. Would you say you're more afraid of the other right wing radicals in you our allies is correct.
Yes, I am. How did you find out that you were obviously you found that you were being targeted by the the groups on the right to the internet, you said that they because they reached out? How did you find out that you were being targeted by ISIS, though?
Well, I'm an academic, I'm a professor. And so I have a number of friends who specialize in jihadist literature and are always logging on to those websites. And so I have a colleague of mine who makes it a point to basically read every single publication of ISIS. And he texted me as soon as he downloaded their magazine, and said that, hey, you know your names in the latest cover in the latest magazine. And a few hours later, the FBI as well contacted me and informed me that my name and my picture was in their latest magazine. So within a day, I got the magazine.
Right? Yeah, exactly. They have a magazine. It's not sold on your local Newsstand. It's actually an online magazine. And it's called a debit. And in this latest issue, they had a color photograph of myself, which I can see on the screen. And they basically called for why assassination and the assassination of another individual as well here in America, are you worried?
Of course, I'm worried, of course. But at the same time,
as a religious person older, you know, every No, no, no, no, not at all. I mean, as a religious person, obviously, I do put my trust in God. And, you know, the Quran teaches us if you put your trust in God, he'll take care of you. And secondly, as an American Muslim, really, I'm not concerned about ISIS, because they really don't exist in America, I actually feel very safe being in any mosque in North America or any major convention. I am not worried that Muslims are somehow going to take this call to action and implement it. Because I know for a fact that American Muslims really have nothing to do with ISIS. So what about us? There's an element of precaution. What about a lone
wolf as someone who is trying to prove something to ISIS so they can join the organization who may not necessarily be Muslim?
Well done. Those lone wolves exists on both sides of the spectrum. Correct. Right. And we just saw the Chapel Hill shooting a few weeks ago, where three young Muslim kids were killed by what appears to be a religiously motivated hate crime. So those types of lone wolves exist on both sides of the equation, and where I'm living in America.
I agree with you, but that's why I said, Are you concerned about any of that? On any side? You said, You're not walking over your shoulder for any of them?
Well, I mean, looking over my shoulders, it gives us an indication that I'm always worried. Of course, I'm taking some logical precautions, some some simple precautions. But at the end of the day, you can't protect yourself against a lone wolf. As long as you've done what you can you put your trust in God. That's all you can do. Really, in the end of the day, you spoke to the FBI understand today? What did they tell you?
Well, obviously, they also told me some common sense precautions. They told me to reach out to them in case there's there's any issue and there's a direct lines of communication between us as of yet. They're monitoring the situation and as am I,
why do you think
ISIS continues to grow? What is the appeal of this terror organization in your estimation?
Good question. So ISIS is coming out of a particular socio political circumstances situation, and one really does need to look at what's happened in Iraq for the last 30 years. The the instability
To the political revolutions, the chaos that has been generated the economic sanctions, the bombings, the invasions, ISIS is really the product of socio political circumstances. And not the product of the Koran or the teachings of Islam. And the appeal of ISIS is that they're claiming to fight on behalf of the oppressed to to fight an invading army. And basically, that's mainly us to protect innocent people from from the intransigent seas of a third party. And there's this this romantic nostalgic notion of reestablishing the caliphate. So there are a few misguided young men and women who idealistically look at these claims and actually believe them at face value. But
again, what's that? What's the root cause here are political and not theological? Not theological. Thank you. Yes, sir. Karate professor. We appreciate please be careful. Thank you for having me. Thank you. Thank you. I'll do it coming up being targeted by ISIS. no laughing matter of course. But if you don't laugh at this to terrorists, when