Posted by: Lister | April 20, 2008

Does Wilders misquote the Quran

Muslims against Sharia seem to agree with Robert Spencer, published at JihadWatch. At least, they say nothing to disagree. I’d comment on their site, but it seems I have to be a member.

Wiki says that to misquote is:

A misquotation is an accidental or intentional misrepresentation of a person’s speech or writing, involving one or more of:

Involving one or more of things like taking a quote out of context. Spencer doesn’t actually seem to address taking out of context in that article. He concentrates on mistranslation. And he gives 16 other translations to which he compares Wilders’ choice in the movie Fitna.

Then he claims:

Incorrectly translated? Only if these 16 other English translations of the Qur’an, many of which were made by Muslims, are also incorrectly translated.

As if all 16 of his chosen translations agreed with Wilders’ choice. But they do not. For instance:

Wilders’ choice of translation:

“Therefore, when ye meet the unbelievers, smite at their necks and when you have caused a bloodbath among them, bind a bond firmly on them.” (47:4)

This is about meeting unbelievers in battle. Yusuf Ali, Nooruddin, Dawood, Pickthall, Hilali-Khan, Shakir, Asad, Sher Ali and Muhammad Ali all mention battle directly in that particular line of 47:4

While other translators may not mention battle directly in their translation of that one sentence, I bet they do mention battle in a later line: “when the war lays down its burden”, which is included as part of 47:4 in the translation on WikiSource.

So the context makes it clear that this is about meeting in battle. Wilders gives no context. So there is no way to know that the context is battle. People could think that it includes meeting unbelievers for a cup of coffee. He gives no context as to the cause of battle.

Also, compare the translation of 8:39. Wilders makes no mention of oppression:

“Fight them until there is no dissension and the religion is entirely Allah’s.” (8:39)

Again, many of Spencer’s choice of translations do mention oppression in their translation of that particular line. For those that don’t: there will be context in the preceeding verses, which are about the Meccans who persecuted Muslims — kept them in bonds, killed them and forced them from their homes.

So Spencer’s wise crack blows up in his face:

Maybe only Eteraz possesses the coveted Secret Qur’anic Decoder Ring. But until he deigns to share his Precious with us, pardon me if I find in this yet another example of the dishonesty he has manifested all too many times in the past.

No secret decoder ring needed, Robert. You provided translations that differ to Wilders’ choice of translation. As did Eteraz himself when he linked to those reviews.

Summary

Wilders misquotes the Quran because the quotes are out of context.

Does he mistranslate the actual lines he quotes? That is harder to say because other translators have come up with similar translations. But they did so while translating whole chapters — not single lines.

So Wilders translations are misleading. This is acknowledged, indirectly, by one of his fans. This fan begins the review with comparisons from NJ Dawood’s translation — hey! he’s a skeptic doing his job. But then drops the Dawood comparison when it gets to 47:4 — compare Dawood and Wilders in Spencer’s article and see if you can guess why. Or perhaps I’m too cynical?

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Responses

  1. Your points are well-taken but Robert Spencer is not to be taken seriously. This brand of toad speads hate by any means available and he will always have a small circles of toads around him. NBD. The plague of raining toads has passed with the Bush administration. The Boogyman Islam has served its purpose and so has Spencer in his own little sick feeble way. Times up.

    Islam is not a faith of one or two verses to the exclusion of the others. Spencer knows this.

    At his core, he is a liar. And he knows it.
    It is a black trade and the fire he stokes will turn on him and consume him.

    Can’t wait for that.

  2. You don’t need to be a member to comment on our blog. As for Fitna, the only shortcoming of the movie is that it doesn’t make a clear distinction between Muslims and Islamofascists.

  3. Wilders should look into the mirror & he will see how ugly he is … but cant really blame him after all he belongs to the same people whose accomplishments i have posted in the form of a questionar
    who nuked civlian population of japan?
    who killed 6 million jews?
    who destroyed the aztec civilization?
    who decimated the aborgines of australia?
    who bombed vietnam to stone ages?
    who fought world war 1 and 2?
    who killed the complete mohican population?
    who caused the great bengal famine in india?
    who divided korea and made brothers kill each other?
    who colonized half the globe ?
    who transported millions of people as slaves from africa like cat and dogs knowiing very well that only 20% of them will survive the journey?
    do u know the origines of place like west indies, papu di guinea what happened to there native population?
    ——
    As far as quran is concerned this verse is enough to refute all falsehood leveled agains it

    (FIGHT THOSE WHO FIGHT U & DONT TRANSGRESS COZ ALLAH DOES NOT LIKE TRANSGRESSERS )

  4. Mirror

    Please walk over to http://sigmundcarlandalfred.wordpress.com/

    Read and respond, see you there.

  5. Buzz, it isn’t Christians who ‘Promise to finish what Hitler started.’

    Mein Kampf is not a best seller in Christian nations and Christians do not quote the Protocols as gopsel (as you have made clear that you do).

    Know what I mean, Buzz? Sure you do.

    Have you ever noticed that people who are most vocal in denying the Holocaust are the ones who believe it is a good idea?

    In the Middle East, whole cultures and societies that had nothing to do with the Holocaust, embrace the evil doers and celebrate their crimes.

    They, who should have the moral superiority to chastise the Christian world for our inaction and self imposed distance, choose instead to identify with evil- so much so, that they teach it in schools and echo the hatred in political and religious milieus.

    We see the celebration of murder and evil on a scale heretofore unprecedented. We hear and see it it daily.

  6. “Muslims against Sharia” is a jewish fraudster pretending to be Muslim. Even atheists can see through the charade. This troll leaves comments on plenty of Muslim blogs all the time. Both Wilders and Wilders are a pair of zionist shabbos goyim trying to stoke up anti-Muslim propaganda. A pair of nazi stooges is that they are. Its time time to put the spotlight on violent whites and their history of terrorism. Guess no one is interested in that.

  7. I don’t know who is what on the internet. For the record, I’m an atheist.

    But I have to be supicious of anybody who applauds Wilders’ movie. There are much better documentaries out there — ones which both discuss what the extremists say and what the regular Muslims say.

    Having looked at Muslims against Sharia’s blog, I am surprised by the lack of moderate Muslim opinion on it. I saw no reporting of Islamophobia, such as Attack on Mosque, ( Feb 2008 ).

    In fact, I don’t see any kind of solidarity with the wider Muslim community.

  8. JAH- On what basis are you making the claim that Muslims Against Sharia is not a legitimate organization? Do you have any evidence of that?

    Are you saying that there are no Muslims against the imposition of Sharia law? How do you explain the loud and well publicized movement by Muslims in Canada (Ontario) who lobbied against the introduction of Shariah law in that country?

    To make assertions without any kind of evidence only highlights your own lack of credibility and/or knowledge of the situation.


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