Imam Obama Funded Musel-prop:
Â “Muslims comprise approximately 23 percent of the world’s population, and we like our comics to reflect the world in its diversity.”
There is a new and particularly insidious form of cultural jihad that is targeting our children: comic books featuring Islamic superheroes. A Muslim named Naif Al-Mutawa has created “The 99,” a comic book and TV series featuring a gang of Muslim superheroes â€“ one of whom wears a burqa.
It’s no surprise that the mainstream media love it. PBS is running a documentary feature on al-Mutawa this week, and CNN, the Crescent News Network, finds the comic books thrilling. Barack Obama, CNN’s Dan Merica reported last week, “called the comic books, which debuted in 2006, ‘the most innovative response’ to America’s expanding dialogue with the Muslim world, which Obama has encouraged.” But poor al-Mutawa, said Merica, although he had hoped that “The 99” would “become a symbol of toleration,” instead found that “a vocal minority” opposed the comics, raising “surprising questions about American tolerance of Islam.”
“A symbol of toleration”? Really?
In reality, a Shariah board approved “The 99,” and Shariah in all its mainstream and traditional forms calls for the subjugation of non-Muslims and the denial of basic rights to them under the rule of Islamic law. I don’t consider that an acceptable level of “toleration.” “The 99,” is mainstreaming the institutionalized oppression of women under Shariah, as exemplified by the burqa-wearing superhero. One would think that the male superheroes would have superpowers strong enough to be able to control themselves without the women having to don cloth coffins. â€¨But portraying the Islamic oppression of women in a positive light doesn’t bother al-Mutawa at all. Instead, he was “worried about the comics being banned in Saudi Arabia â€“ which wound up happening, briefly â€“ and he expected to be challenged by conservatives in Islam, since Al-Mutawa wanted to buck the trend of Islamic culture being directly tied to the Quran.”
But when the projected TV series was picked up by The Discovery Channel’s “The Hub” but then not immediately scheduled, al-Mutawa and CNN blamed me and others who protested the series, not the Saudis. “All of a sudden we couldn’t get an air date, and I was asked to be patient and we have been. But it has been a year, and the actual push-back died down. … We were waiting for a fatwa from a cleric in Saudi Arabia,” said Isaac Solotaroff, director of the PBS documentary on al-Mutawa, “when it ended up being the U.S. market that has been resistant to ‘The 99.'”
Oh yes, Saudi Arabia is so much freer and more open-minded than the United States.
Speaking about me and other critics of “The 99,” al-Mutawa said: “There is nothing different from them and the extremists in my country [Kuwait]. They are just as bad. They are just intellectual terrorists. How clichÃ© is it that characters created to promote tolerance are getting shot down by extremists.” He complained that “a very small group of people who scream very loud have a disproportionate share of the public discourse when it comes to culture.” In effect, he is saying:Â Vee vill lie to you, and you vill like it!
Al-Mutawa’s complaints are all just ridiculous victimhood rhetoric. He is the one mainstreaming oppression and discrimination. I work for equality of rights for all people. So which one of us is the “intellectual terrorist”?…
Â Da’awa Comics
DETROIT (The Blaze/AP) â€” Comic book fans might call it a great origin story: In the aftermath of 9/11, a Muslim man creates a comic book series, “The 99,” inspired by the principles of his faith. It builds a global audience and investors contribute millions for it to continue and expand.
Despite thisÂ intriguingÂ story, critics have dismissed the project as mere indoctrination (last year,the Blaze coveredÂ the debate surrounding the comic book series).
In two vastly different cultures, Naif Al-Mutawa’s tale has hit a few roadblocks: Censorship from Saudi Arabia, home to the main Muslim holy sites; in the United States, a struggle to build an audience in a post-9/11 world where suspicion and scrutiny of all things Islamic is certainly present.
“That’s one of the things that was most disappointing to me in the beginning,” Al-Mutawa said on a recent visit to Detroit. “You have two birthplaces: You have the birthplace of Islam, which initially rejected it (and) the birthplace of democracy and tolerance, this country, that I’m now facing resistance in â€“ the two natural places for this product.”
Below, watch Al-Mutawa discuss “The 99” during a TED talk last year:
Al-Mutawa’s reputation in the Middle East and elsewhere has grown since the 2006 debut of “The 99,” as well as its rollout into animation. The series is named for the 99 qualities the Quran attributes to God: strength, courage, wisdom and mercy among them.
The comic book spawned a TV series and 26 half-hour episodes of the 3-D animated version of the “The 99” have been sold to broadcasters. They are expected to be released early next year in more than 50 countries, and a second season is in production.
Al-Mutawa, a U.S.-educated psychologist from Kuwait, has been promoting “Wham! Bam! Islam!“ a PBS documentary that tells the story of ”The 99â€³ from an idea hatched during a cab ride to its raising of $40 million in three calls for investors. The promotional push is supporting the animated series, the vehicle by which his company hopes to turn a profit.
That’s false. Obama wasted taxpayer money to foist this crapola on unsuspecting American kiddies.
“The 99” grew out of his childhood love of Batman, Superman and their superhero brethren, along with a desire to provide role models for his five young sons.
“Basically, `The 99â€² is based on Quranic archetypes, the same way that Batman and Superman are based on Judeo-Christian and Biblical archetypes. And just like Batman and Superman are secular story lines, so too are `The 99,’” he said.
“It seemed to me that the only people using mass media when it came to things to do with religion â€“ at least my religion â€“ were people who were doing very destructive things. So the question was how do I challenge that in a way that’s secular yet cannot be dismissed as Western?”
Critics on both sides of the religious and cultural divide see subversion in Al-Mutawa’s superheroes. Some hardline Muslims say the series subverts their faith by embodying the attributes in human characters, while a few non-Muslim American critics have labeled it sneaky Islamic indoctrination.
Al-Mutawa said it took investment by an Islamic investment bank to make his series “halal,” or acceptable to Saudi officials. The nation’s government-run broadcaster has since bought the rights to the animated series. So has The Hub cable network in the U.S. â€“ though the latter has indefinitely postponed airing it after some critical columns and blog posts.
“One of the comments on the blogs that ended up delaying us was someone who warned that we can’t let the Muslims brainwash our children like the Mexicans did with `Dora the Explorer,’” Al-Mutawa said. Religious News ServiceÂ has more:
“Be prepared for the latest exercise in Muslim propaganda,” warned Adrian Morgan, editor at Family Security Matters, a conservative website, in a column last year. “Are we going to see ass-kicking Christian superhero nuns, called Faith, Hope and Charity, whooping sinner’s butts and sending Satan into hell? It is doubtful.”
A few weeks later, New York Post columnist Andrea Peyser griped that “Wonder Woman-style cleavage has been banned from the ladies,” in “The 99,” and “male and female characters are never alone together.”
Still, he’s measuring broader acceptance in other ways. Al-Mutawa worked with DC Comics last year on a six-issue crossover that teamed “The 99” with The Justice League of America.
“They start out with distrust between the two teams of superheroes â€“ Superman punches one of my guys early on,” Al-Mutawa said. “And then they figure out during the arc that it’s the bad guys causing the distrust.”
Robin Wright, author of “Rock the Casbah: Rage and Rebellion Across the Islamic World,” said Al-Mutawa has “been way ahead of the curve in figuring out how you challenge extremism and how you create alternative role models to Osama bin Laden or Hassan Nasrallah (Hezbollah’s leader) for kids and adults.”
Muslim characters are rare in U.S. comic books but there have been some inroads.
Marvel Comics has Dust, a young Afghan woman whose mutant ability to manipulate sand and dust has been part of the popular X-Men books.
“I don’t view a Muslim superhero as avant garde,” Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso said. “Muslims comprise approximately 23 percent of the world’s population, and we like our comics to reflect the world in its diversity.”
Dust wears a robe and veil to observe Muslim hijab, or modest dress. Another character, M, is a woman of Algerian descent who only recently revealed her faith in the pages of “X-Factor.” Like millions of other Muslim women in the real world, she “does not observe hijab, and often dresses quite provocatively,” Alonso said.
Other characters have not been so accepted. In late 2010, DC Comics introduced Nightrunner, a young Muslim hero of Algerian descent raised in Paris. He’s part of the global network of crime fighters set up by Batman alter-ego Bruce Wayne. Conservative bloggers decried the move, noting that instead of tapping a native French person, they opted for a minority.
Frank Miller, whose dark and moody take on Batman in “The Dark Knight Returns” in 1986 energized the character, has taken a different tack in his latest work, “Holy Terror,” which tells the story of The Fixer and his efforts to stamp out Islamic terrorists.
The graphic novel initially took root as a look at Batman’s efforts to fight terrorism, something that grew out of Miller’s experiences of being in New York during 9/11. As he worked on it, it became apparent that it wasn’t suitable for the DC character.
“As I developed it and worked on it, the subject was too serious and the character’s actions were not Batman,” he said.
The book has been criticized as anti-Islamic propaganda, but Miller says that’s not his notion.
“I lived through a time when 3,000 of my neighbors were incinerated for no apparent reason. I lived through the chalky, smoky weeks that followed and through the warplanes flying overhead and realized that, much like my character, The Fixer, I found a mission,” he said.
As for “The 99,” he said has not seen it but welcomes Al-Mutawa’s efforts.
“I come in with my own very pro-Western-they-attacked-my-city-point of view,” Miller said. “If other people have other points of view to bring in, I just welcome it.”
Al-Mutawa called “Holy Terror” par for the historical course for Islam.
“There’s no denying that terrible things have happened in the name of my religion â€“ as they have in the names of most religions, if not all religions,” he said. “As human beings, we’re a little bit lazy. We don’t like to change the schemas in our minds. We like to fit new information into existing schemas. That’s why to some people anything to do with Islam is going to be bad.”