Saudi arrested for a YouTube video about poverty!

Posted in Uncategorized on October 18, 2011 by Arabilluminist

By cartoonist: Carlos Latuff

A hobbyist Saudi movie maker has been arrested after publishing a video on YouTube he’d filmed in one of Riyadh’s poor neighborhoods.

The young Saudi movie maker ‘Firas Bugnah’ has just established his own show on YouTube through the channel Mal3ob3lena which translates to something like “We’ve been punk’d”, referring to the Saudi people.

The episode starts with “As long as you’re O.K….” – That phrase is usually seen on billboards greeting the Saudi King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz “As long as you’re O.K, then we’re O.K”

At first, random Saudi men are interviewed, each completing the sentence “… We’re O.K” before the scenes shift to the inside of a poor neighborhood just 5 Kilometers from the main streets of Riyadh where another batch of interviewed people say “We’re NOT O.K”.

The video then shows how different Saudi people live in extreme poverty, citing families of 13-20 people living in small houses with income of 1500-5000 S.R = $400-$1300

Another notable segment of the video is an interview with the shiekh of the mosque in that neighborhood in which he speaks about the spread of drug use as a cause for poverty, the employment of children in distribution and selling of drugs, and also the prostitution business where he noted that some men prostitute their own wives and family members to feed themselves.

While the video was very well received by the Saudi people, it seems that it was not by Saudi authorities.

The Saudi community on Twitter is currently discussing the story under the hashtag #mal3ob3lena and #FollowFiras

Firas Bugnah is still in jail without specific charges, if he is not released Wednesday Oct 19th then he will have to stay in jail without charges at least until Saturday.

It’s been 1,250 days since my last post!

Posted in Uncategorized on October 11, 2011 by Arabilluminist

It has been 1,250 days since my last post on the 9th of May 2008.

As I am writing right now I’m reminded of what my life was like when I started blogging. I was forced to leave this blog and focus on crucial matters that had to be resolved.

Thankfully, I’ve come a long way and during that time I’ve always longed to have the free time to relax and share what’s on my mind with the world. I was reading some news on the internet about a month ago and felt the urge of wanting to blog about it, that’s when I realized I’d forgotten the login information to my blog!

I spent an hour trying to figure out what email I used and which of my many passwords was associated with the account. Resetting the password without the actual email associated with the account does not work. I gave up after some time and decided to leave it for a later time until I can find the email somewhere else.

Today, I was reading in one of my journals and found the email written in pencil on the side of the page the day I decided to create the blog and the quest began to find a name for it. That day, I used my journal to come up with the name “The Arab Illuminist”.

I am very excited to finally have the time to blog again and really happy to have this blog back.

~The Arab Illuminist

NIN – The Slip

Posted in Music, Personal with tags , , on May 9, 2008 by Arabilluminist

Abdullah Chhadeh Solo Qanun Rast

Posted in Illuminating Videos, Music on April 9, 2008 by Arabilluminist

Poll: American Muslims reject extremes

Posted in Uncategorized on April 9, 2008 by Arabilluminist
The USA’s estimated 2.4 million Muslims hold more moderate political views than Muslims elsewhere in the world and are mostly middle class and willing to adopt the American way of life, according to one of the most comprehensive surveys of this segment of the nation’s population.

The Pew Research Center study released Tuesday found that “Muslim Americans are very much like the rest of the country,” says Luis Lugo, director of the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. “They do not see a conflict between being a devout Muslim and living in a modern society.”

Muslim Americans, however, have a much more negative view about the Iraq war and the war against terrorism than the U.S. public as a whole, the survey found. The study also found pockets of sympathy for Islamic extremism, especially among younger people. Muslims between the ages of 18 and 29 express significantly greater acceptance than older people of suicide bombings in some cases.

The young show a greater tendency to identify themselves as Muslim first and American second. This faith-first pattern is even more pronounced among Muslims in Europe, according to previous Pew surveys.

Muslims here “come across as much more moderate than the Muslim public in other areas of the world,” says Andrew Kohut, president of the Pew Research Center.

Muslims in the USA have been under intense scrutiny since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. More than half of those surveyed say it is more difficult to be a Muslim since then and believe that the government singles them out for extra surveillance. Only 5% say they have a favorable view of al-Qaeda, although 27% express no opinion.

Most hold a positive view of American society. Seven in 10 say Americans can get ahead through hard work, a higher proportion than the public as a whole.

The survey shows that 47% of Muslims consider themselves Muslim first and Americans second. Previous Pew surveys show that 42% of Christians identify with their religion before their country. Among white evangelicals, 62% say they identify themselves first as Christians.

The U.S. Muslim population is one of the world’s most diverse. The nearly two-thirds who are immigrants came from 68 countries.

The poll found that African Americans are the most disillusioned segment of the Muslim American population, a possible reflection of their economic conditions and experience with racial discrimination.

The poll has a margin of error of +/-5 percentage points.

The survey “clearly shows that the American Muslim community is well integrated in our society,” says Ibrahim Hooper, communications director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a civil rights and advocacy group in Washington, D.C. “The overwhelming majority of American Muslims reject terrorism and religious extremism.”

Source: USA Today

Keeping America Clean! – Good Job

Posted in News, Social on April 5, 2008 by Arabilluminist
**Personal thoughts to be added soon..**
From my university e-mail box:
“All sorts of names have been changed”
Letter# 1
————————-
From: Chief of Police
Sent: Wed 02/04/2008 03:23 PM
Subject: Crime Alert – Suspicious Person

At approx. 1:45 PM today, Wednesday, 4-2-08, a female student reported that she was approached by an unknown Middle Eastern male on Salem St. in the vicinity of the Salem St. apartments at approx. 1:20 PM. He tried to engage her in conversation, talking first about religion and Darwin’s theory of Evolution, and then made several sexually explicit remarks giving the student the impression that he was attempting to solicit sexual favors.
The subject, who was last seen walking east on Salem St., is further described as being approx. 30 years old, dark complexion, mustache, thick Middle Eastern accent, wearing a tan sweater, dress pants and was carrying a camera. He also mentioned that he had a sister who lived in an apartment in nearby.

Anyone with information concerning this subject is asked to call the University Police Dept. at 555-4202

Chief of Police
————————-

Letter #2
————————-
From: Chief of Police
Sent: Thu 03/04/2008 03:41 PM
Subject: Update to Suspicious Person Crime Alert issued on 4-2-08

The suspicious person described as a Middle Eastern male, approx. 30 years of age, in the Crime Alert issued on 4-2-08 has been identified and issued a Trespass notice banning him from campus. If he returns to campus he is subject to on-sight arrest for Criminal Trespass in the First Degree.
Since no criminal charges have been filed we cannot release his identity and photograph at this time. He is scheduled to return to his native Pakistan on Friday, 4-11-08, and it is not believed that he poses any further threat to the University Community.

Chief of Police
————————-

**Personal thoughts to be added soon..**

“Radical Islam”-It’s Getting Boring!

Posted in Arabilluminist Gossip, Middle East on April 1, 2008 by Arabilluminist

Original post by Bebichan

I am getting tired of hearing about “a new movie condemning Islam”… “Islamic nations respond with death threats and a fatwa against “…””

Once again, we are faced with a new critic of Islam…Geert Wilders.
Wilders is a member of the “Party of Freedom” in the Netherlands and is known for his backwards mentality opposing any form of immigration from non western countries, and opposition to Multi-cultured society (especially when those cultures are from “non western” parts of the world). Fitna (which is an Arabic word referring to schism) is the latest Anti-Islam movie which he released on the 29th of March.

Islamic criticism is becoming a somewhat repetitive topic which holds no facts, and no reality to what the Islamic religion really is…and I’m sure the “real Muslims” are tired of defending their religion, and arguing with the masses of ignorant, misinformed beings.

Figures like Geert Wilders fail to impress me in their so called skills of criticism, using radical figures that are obviously psychopaths and have no relation to the religion itself as their examples of what Islam truly is. One can only sit back and laugh at the completely absurd claims they make.

One of the major things Geert Wilders speaks about is his belief that there is no such thing as a moderate Muslim, that this is in no way achievable.
However there is no such thing as “radical” “extreme” or “fundamental” Islam either.
There has been a growing use of the phrase “Radical Islam”… in actual fact radicalism and Islam has no correlation. There is no such thing as “extremists” in religion…its either religious or it’s not, and when it gets to what’s described as “extreme” it is no longer religion.
It’s time and time again that Muslims have to keep proving that violence, killing and suicide bombing have nothing to do with Islamic teachings and in fact are one of the three fundamental sins of Islam (suicide in any case, violence towards others and murder).
Suicide bombing derives from a psycho-mentality that we have seen in many groups, Buddhism being one of those…it does not originate from Islam.
People who condone things like this “Killing in the Name of God” are not Muslims, but rather brain washed psycho’s.

It can be agreed that there is a growth in hate amongst what’s known as the “Islamic Nations” but this is entirely for political reasons, and whilst you have insane so called Islamic leaders preaching violence and hate, one must not continue to make the mistake that they represent of Islam. It’s not just Muslims in these regions which hold tensions toward the west.
Using terrorists and radical psychotic figures as the face of Islam is much like using the KKK as the face of white people, and claiming that the KKK’s white supremacist ideologies are the ideologies of the entire White race.
This is an absolutely inaccurate suggestion, which is far too general to be realistic.

When I witness people who have not read any Islamic scripts (such as the Qur’an for Islam) in their original language (Arabic in this case), arguing and claiming that Islam is a religion of violence and not peace, hatred and not love… it becomes annoying to try and explain to them that their argument is of no significance.
Practising Muslims, strive to read and understand the Qur’an in its original script in order to gain the real meaning of it, while Islamic critics read a void translation of separated verses taken out of context and use these as evidence against Islam.
You can’t read one paragraph of a book and generate an entire synopsis on the book.

I’ll give you an example of what is being done to Islamic texts today in order to give a negative interpretation of text by taking one sentence from my above paragraph:

“Islam is a religion of violence and not peace, hatred and not love”

Without reading the sentences before and after this, we have an unfinished sentence with no back up and no explanation. For someone who is reading that on it’s own it appears as if I am attacking Islam, while in actual fact in that paragraph I am trying to point out that these are ignorant claims.

When a verse or line in the Qur’an is quoted, and used as proof of all the negative claims against Islam, I have to stick by the argument that this is absolutely foolish.

We know for sure that there is a massive tension between the West and the Middle East, and as I have stated before, this is entirely generated because of Political tensions and has nothing to do with people being Muslims.
I mean let us not forget that 9/11 caused the invasion of two countries… and a few thousand deaths of innocent civilians… led to approximately 1.7million innocent civilian deaths.
Continual western intervention has led to the fall of Iraq, the creation of a massive insurgency which some people seem to forget was started by the mistakes of a Paul Bremer (an American official working under Rumsfeld, Cheney and Bush)…who thought it a good idea to disband the entire Iraqi army (which numbered to around 700,000 people), fire all Ba’ath members in Parliament, ministries, and schools (also known as the de-ba’thification of Iraq)…
Lest we forget that the reason the Bush administration claims it decided to go to war was to remove Saddam from power and enforce democracy in Iraq…despite previous American Administrations funding Saddam, helping him to gain power and helping him to carry out atrocities against Iraqi’s.

Afghanistan which was immediately invaded post 9/11 because of links to the terrorist attacks, got in the state it was before 9/11 under a Taliban regime, after America helped to train the Taliban and get them into power in Afghanistan…so there’s two terrorist organisations America has funded or trained.

See every time the west has involved itself with Middle East it has caused nothing but trouble and more atrocities…which stirs only more hatred amongst the people, not because they’re Muslims, but because of the continuous crap they go through at the hands of western governments.
This has nothing to do with radical Islam, but it has everything to do with hate growing amongst people after decades of wars, invasions and being appointed terrorist or dictatorial leaderships by the west.

This is why I’m tired of “radical Islam” crap, “Islam is a religion of hate” bullshit, critics trying to attack a religion without looking beyond it and seeing what actually causes this mass hatred amongst people. It’s simply baseless, poorly formed arguments and I’m tired of it.

Religions should have absolutely nothing to do with politics and people continuously linking the two just causes more and more problems.

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