Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Friday, February 28, 2003

Apparently militant Islam has found a toehold among Australian aboriginies.

Militant young Aborigines are converting to Islam in increasing numbers, and some are flirting with the fundamentalist ideologies that have inspired recent terrorism.

There are an estimated 1,000 indigenous Muslims in Australia, including new recruits and descendants of mixed marriages. Some Aborigines are embracing Islam for spiritual reasons, but many say it gives them a sense of worth that they have lacked as members of an oppressed minority.

The documentary, made by Australia's SBS Television, featured some recent converts who profess to support Osama bin Laden. Khalid, who converted to Islam more than a decade ago while in prison, said: "Wherever you are, Osama bin Laden, I love you, brother, and I pray for you, because to me you're just a spiritual warrior standing up for Islam and propagating freedom around the world." Khalid, who has grown a beard and wears an Islamic skullcap, claimed there were thousands of budding Bin Ladens in Aboriginal communities. "If they ever find Osama bin Laden, another 1,000 will pop up," he said.

And of course this being the Independent, they can't let it pass without calling the governments of Australia and America racist.

Most Aborigines have been Christians since missionaries arrived with the convict fleets two centuries ago. But, like African American Muslims, angry indigenous men are finding Islam empowering.

Of course they would have to assume that Martin Luther King Jr and the Civil Rights movement of the 60's, led by Christians and Jews, ws not empowering.

< email | 2/28/2003 10:03:00 AM | link

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