The New York Times last Thursday published a lengthy piece titled, “ISIS enshrines a theology of rape,” about how the Islamic State, or ISIS, cites Islamic theology to justify its brutal acts, claiming that the Quran “condones and encourages” raping women if they are not true believers of Islam.
It’s sickening and horrifying reading. Recounting one girl’s ordeal, the Times article reports that a Muslim of the Islamic State “knelt beside the bed and prostrated himself in prayer before getting on top of her. When it was over, he knelt to pray again, bookending the rape with acts of religious devotion.” As far as this monster was concerned, there was nothing hypocritical whatsoever about praying before and after committing rape: “‘I kept telling him it hurts – please stop,’ said the girl, whose body is so small an adult could circle her waist with two hands. ‘He told me that according to Islam he is allowed to rape an unbeliever. He said that by raping me, he is drawing closer to God.'”
Predictably, the Times trots out Islamic apologists and “scholars” who “disagree” on the proper interpretation of the verses of the Quran that justify and encourage the taking of infidel women as sex slaves. The article claims: “Scholars of Islamic theology disagree, however, on the proper interpretation of these verses, and on the divisive question of whether Islam actually sanctions slavery.”
This is not really in question. It does. It’s not a question of a “proper” interpretation versus an “improper” one. The New York Times calls all this ISIS’ “extreme interpretation of Islam.” In fact, it is not; it is the literal understanding of Islam. Authentic Islam. The Islamic State practices pure Islam. The theological argument is authentic. The group has codified it, writing how-to guides and memos outlining the dos and don’ts of sexual slavery.
To its credit, The New York Times goes on to cite a scholar who is actually honest about the Quran and Islamic doctrine regarding sex slavery:
Cole Bunzel, a scholar of Islamic theology at Princeton University, disagrees, pointing to the numerous references to the phrase “Those your right hand possesses” in the Quran, which for centuries has been interpreted to mean female slaves. He also points to the corpus of Islamic jurisprudence, which continues into the modern era and which he says includes detailed rules for the treatment of slaves.
“There is a great deal of scripture that sanctions slavery,” said Mr. Bunzel, the author of a research paper published by the Brookings Institution on the ideology of the Islamic State. “You can argue that it is no longer relevant and has fallen into abeyance. ISIS would argue that these institutions need to be revived, because that is what the Prophet and his companions did.”
The Islamic State consistently adheres to the Shariah: “The captives were also forced to answer intimate questions, including reporting the exact date of their last menstrual cycle. They realized that the fighters were trying to determine whether they were pregnant, in keeping with a Shariah rule stating that a man cannot have intercourse with his slave if she is pregnant.”
The Times article quotes an Islamic State jihadi saying: “We have indeed raided and captured the kafirah women and drove them like sheep by the edge of the sword.”
Kafirah means unbelievers – infidels.
It is stunning that it has taken the New York Times years to address this savage issue. Tens of thousands of young girls have been raped, bought and sold. And while the New York Times only addresses sex slavery under the Islamic State, it is hardly exclusive to ISIS. The Muslim sex trafficking gangs in the United Kingdom, for example, mirror the practice. And the Islamic State’s Nigeria branch, Boko Haram, caught the attention of the world and got a hashtag from Michelle Obama when it kidnapped Christian girls and forced them into sex slavery. Whether it’s in territories controlled by the Islamic State or in Nigeria or Britain, these acts are all motivated by the same Islamic beliefs the Times discusses in Thursday’s piece. Yet, the New York Times has long criticized and smeared my colleagues and me for writing about these horrors and opposing them, calling us “anti-Muslim.”
Now the truth of what we have been saying all along is finally becoming impossible to ignore and deny.