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Developments After 9/11
Muslims in America
Muslims in the American Army
American Government Officials and Politicians are Intrested in Islam
Islam in the American Media
The Qur'an Has Become the Best Selling Book in America
The Rise Of Islam Will Continue

Developments After 9/11

American interest in Islam reached its pinnacle in the last quarter of 2001. The most important reason for this was the 9/11 attacks against the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Several studies undertaken to determine the roots of terrorist ideology, as well as investigations of Islam, have enabled people to learn that Islam is a peaceful religion that enjoins tolerance, justice, mercy, and love. Islam has suddenly become a major topic of discussion all over the world. More and more world-renowned statesmen, political scientists, researchers, and thinkers consider it necessary to understand Islam correctly, and have given speeches underlining Islamic tolerance and willingness to reach agreement. Americans have approached Muslim organizations in order to find the most accurate information about Islam and Islamic history. As a result of this interest, the Middle East Media Research Institute reported that after 9/11, 34,000 Americans converted to Islam.40

The Egyptian weekly al-Ahram al-Arabi published a letter by Dr. Walid A. Fatihi of the Harvard Medical Faculty. In it, he stated that when he first heard of the attack, he thought that the work he had done to introduce Islam to America would be set back by 50 years. However, he soon realized how wrong he was. He continues:

On Saturday, September 15, I went with my wife and children to the biggest church in Boston, [Trinity Church in] Copley Square, by official invitation of the Islamic Society of Boston, to represent Islam by special invitation of the senators of Boston. Present were the mayor of Boston, his wife, and the heads of the universities. There were more than 1,000 people there ...

I read an official statement issued by the leading Muslim clerics condemning the incident [i.e., the attacks]. The statement explained Islam's stance and principles, and its sublime precepts. Afterwards, I read Koranic verses translated into English…

One said to me: "I do not understand the Arabic language, but there is no doubt that the things you said are the words of Allah."

On Sunday, September 16, the Islamic Society of Boston issued an open invitation to the Islamic Center in Cambridge, located between Harvard and MIT. We did not expect more than 100 people, but to our surprise more than 1,000 people came, among them the neighbors, the university lecturers, members of the clergy, and even the leaders of the priests from the nearby churches, who invited us to speak on Islam. All expressed solidarity with Muslims. Many questions flowed to us. Everyone wanted to know about Islam and to understand its precepts…

That same day, I was invited again to participate in a meeting in the church, and again I saw the same things. On Thursday, a delegation of 300 students and lecturers from Harvard visited the center of the Islamic Society of Boston, accompanied by the American Ambassador to Vienna. They sat on the floor of the mosque, which was filled to capacity. We explained to them the precepts of Islam, and defended it from any suspicions [promulgated in the media]. I again read to them from the verses of Allah, and [their] eyes filled with tears. The audience was moved, and many asked to participate in the weekly lessons for non-Muslims held by the Islamic Center…

On Friday, September 21, the Muslims participated in a closed meeting with the governor of Massachusetts. In the meeting, a discussion was held on introducing Islam into the school curriculum, to inform the [American] people and to fight racism against Muslims arising from the American people's ignorance regarding the religion …

These are only some of the examples of what happened and is happening in the city of Boston, and in many other American cities, during these days. Proselytizing in the name of Allah has not been undermined, and has not been set back 50 years, as we thought in the first days after September 11. On the contrary, the 11 days that have passed are like 11 years in the history of proselytizing in the name of Allah. I write to you today with the absolute confidence that over the next few years, Islam will spread in America and in the entire world, Allah willing, much more quickly than it has spread in the past, because the entire world is asking, "What is Islam!"41
(Above) A New York Times report entitled "Terror Attacks Could Change Paths of Faith" dealt with the increasing number of people turning to religion after 9/11. An investigation that appeared in the report revealed that after 9/11, four in every five persons prayed or attended a religious service. (Middle) In a New York Times report in the entitled "Islam Attracts Converts by the Thousands, Drawn Before and After the Attacks," the growth in the number of Americans converting to Islam was discussed. The report stressed the rising number of converts after 9/11. (Below) One of the most striking scenes shown by the media after 9/11 was that of Muslims and Christians sharing their grief and praying together. (Above) The 9/11 attack was severely condemned by Muslims (above). Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, stressed in a report that there was no place for terror in Islam. (Middle) Muslims throughout the world prayed for those who died in the 9/11 attacks. Muslims living in London gathered to pray in Hyde Park. (Below) In a Kansas City Star report entitled "Muslim faith opposed to terrorism, experts say," experts state that Islam is against every kind of terror. After 9/11, many newspapers and television programs reported the Muslim opposition to terror.

On a television program broadcast one week after 9/11, Eck related what that event had changed:

And yet most of us don't really see it [positive changes]. I think one of the real gifts, if we could call it that, of the last week has been the recognition that we are religiously diverse in ways we had never imagined…42

This increased interest in Islam caught the American press' attention, and the issue became a topic on television news programs. One newspaper that took up this issue was The Los Angeles Times. An article entitled "Expressions of Support Surprising to Muslims" reported that one of the most unexpected results was that Americans had begun to study and investigate Islam, and that this interest was so intense that it even surprised Muslims:

Many Americans also are investigating, some for the first time, one of the world's great faiths and oldest civilizations. Bookstores are selling out of copies of the Koran. University classes and teach-ins on the Middle East and Islam are filled to capacity. Middle East scholars are being invited on television news shows repeatedly and being spotted on the street like celebrities. And many everyday Middle Easterners-Muslim or not-are fielding a daily barrage of questions about Islam from neighbors, co-workers and strangers… "We are overwhelmed," said Mahmoud Abdel-Baset, religious director of the Islamic Center of Southern California. Since the attacks, the Los Angeles-based center has hosted a steady stream of dignitaries, including Gov. Gray Davis, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca and Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn... Richard Hrair Dekmejian, a USC professor on Middle Eastern politics, said this thirst for knowledge about Islam is a result of the powerful impact of the Sept. 11 attacks and the general lack of religious knowledge in America.43

(Above) The Muslim population has passed 7 million, In America, many mosques were filled to overflowing at Friday prayers and streets were filled with Muslims performing their prayers.(Middle) America is learning about Islam, (Below) An internet site called "Islam-World's Fastest Growing Religion" carries many items about the growth of Islam. (www.geocities.com/Pentagon/3016/fastest.htm)

In America today, the interest begun with 9/11 continues to intensify and become more widespread. In the following pages, we will see the rise of Islam in America. As we look at all of these developments, we must keep in mind one basic fact: God has given the good news of His promise to believers that true religion will be established among human beings. The events we have experienced show us that, God willing, the fulfillment of this promise is very near. For this reason, we are living in a crucial period and a time of profound change. Believers must realize the value of this period, offer the best and most accurate information to those who are slowly turning to Islam, answer their questions in the most satisfactory way, and be zealous representatives of Islam. As the verse below says, this is an important charge given by God to believers:

Call to the way of your Lord with wisdom and fair admonition, and argue with them in the kindest way. Your Lord knows best who is misguided from His way. And He knows best who are guided. (Qur'an, 16: 125)

(Above) Interest in Islam increases in the US, Islam will spread in the US, (Middle) One of the frequently reported topics in the American press is about converts to Islam. An ABC report entitled "An American in Mecca" recounts Michael Wolfe's pilgrimage. His mother is Christian and his father is Jewish. (Below) The Chicago Tribune deals with the rise of Islam in an article called "Searching Americans Embrace the Logic behind the Teachings of Islam." (Left) One of the places where Islam is most discussed in America is in universities. In this Christian Science Monitor report, we see a meeting held at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one of America's most prestigious universities.(Middle) As a result of the post-9/11 interest in Islam, Muslims were inundated as never before with questions about Islam. Newsday reported that a mosque on Long Island is overflowing with people interested in learning about Islam.(Right) In an ABC report on its Internet site shows images of Muslims performing their prayers on New York streets.

40. "Terror in America, Muslim American Leaders: A Wave of Conversion to Islam in the U.S. Following September 11," MERIM Special Dispatch, November 16, 2001.
41. Al-Ahram al-Arabi, October 20, 2001.
42. "Moyers in Conversation," PBS TV, September 19, 2001.
43. The Los Angeles Times, September 26, 2001.

This site is based on the works of Harun Yahya
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