Jordan’s King Condemns Cartoons

In what must have been frantic last minute alterations to his speech at the planned National Prayer Luncheon in Washington DC, stuff HM King Abdullah condemned the cartoons but seemed to focus more on terrorism or extremism in the name of Islam, doctor or even in the defence of the Prophet Mohammad pbuh.

“Equally, check whilst we respect and revere freedom of speech, we condemn needless desecration and injury of Islamic sensibilities, such as the recent cartoons misrepresenting and vilifying my ancestor the Prophet (may peace and blessings be upon him),’ [source]

King Abdullah told more than 3,000 US and international thinkers, religious leaders and politicians that he also condemns â??extremists, of any religion, who teach intolerance and violence, mutilate scripture to advance their cause.â?

â??We behold with horror and disgust the recent targeting of Christian churches in Iraq, breaking with a 1,400-year tradition of Christian-Muslim friendship and mutual acceptance amongst the Arabs of the Levant,â? he said.

â??To overcome this common foe [extremism], we must explore the values that unite us, rather than exaggerating the misunderstandings that divide us,â? the King said.

King Abdullah noted that Islam, like Christianity and Judaism, is a monotheistic religion. â??Muslims believe that there is only one God; that is the basis of everything in Islam.â?

â??In every generation, people of faith are tested. In our generation, the greatest challenge comes from violent extremists who seek to divide and conquer.â?

He added that extremism is a â??political movement, under religious cover.â?

â??Its adherents want nothing more than to pit us against each other, denying all that we have in common,â? the Monarch said.

…emphasising that these groups â??do not preach the Islam of the Koran or the Prophet Mohammad. Theirs is a repugnant political ideology which violates the principles and statutes of traditional Islamic law.â?

The King warned: â??If we allow such intolerance and ill will to polarise us, do we not betray all those who have died at their hands? And we do worse. We turn away from truth,â? expressed throughout common religious heritage. [source]


  • That is what I am talking about … Now that is what I call a beautiful powerful answer ..
    The logic and depth of these words will hopefully succeed in reaching the angry crowds from both sides ..

    I just love the king and that is the kind of wisdom we need 😀

  • Reporters Without Borders, Worldwide press freedom index 2005:

    1. Denmark
    96. Jordan

    “whilst we respect and revere freedom of speech”

    What is the freedom of speech King Abdullah is respecting? Not the same one RWB is respecting I suppose.

    There were freedom of speech de jure in Soviet Union also, you could say anything you wanted. Only saying or writing something that endanger Soviet Union and communism was prohibited. Hope they enjoyed their freedom.

  • Pekka;

    I belive we have to re-visit this whole concept of freedom of speech. Freedom is such a precious value that should not be practiced in an irresponsible way. Freedom is one component of a whole package of ethical democratic values that include respect of local cultures and religions. I think there is a need for a UN treaty to draw the lines between freedom of speech and insult to cultures. If so, people like you Pekka will not preach us about freedom of speech.

  • I’m glad the king had something to say about this in front of a large audience, although I feel that by mentioning his ancestral line to the prophet (PBUH), the chances of his statement successfully having a serious impact were greatly reduced in sort of the same way a specific statement from Bush on Saddam was defeated when he said “he tried to have my father killed”.

Your Two Piasters: