On January 9, 2015, two days after the Islamist slaughter perpetrated against Charlie Hebdo, a text justifying those who would resort to violence against the magazine was still available on the French-language website of the organization Présence Musulmane / Muslim Presence.
The text was published on September 22, 2012.
It establishes a moral equivalence between a non-violent criticism of Islam, such as Charlie Hebdo’s, and the use of violence by those who are offended by it.
The text also states that, in the hierarchy of values, freedom of expression comes second, behind freedom of conscience.
Tariq Ramadan is the founder of the organization Muslim Presence. An article on the organization’s English website describes Muslim Presence / Présence Musulmane as “a group of Muslim citizens who follow the ideas of Tariq Ramadan.”
On January 8, 2015, the English website of the organization identified Tariq Ramadan as one of its contributors.
After the arson attack against Charlie Hebdo in November 2011, Tariq Ramadan condemned the attack on French television, but accused Charlie Hebdo of producing “a humor of cowards.”
In his classic Priorities of the Islamic movement, based on a lecture that he gave in Algeria in 1990, Muslim Brotherhood spiritual guide Youssef Qaradawi justifies the use of coercion for “changing wrong.” He stresses that one of the political principles brought to this earth by Islam is “changing wrong by force whenever possible.”
In 2009, in his book Radical Reform, Ramadan presented Qaradawi as a “prominent scholar” who has outlined the attitudes and the kind of behaviour that Muslims living in the West should adopt and strive for.
In 2002, Youssef Qaradawi publicly endorsed Tariq Ramadan’s understanding of Islam by asking him to preface a compendium of fatwas that he published in French.
Here is an excerpt of the text entitled No Charlie (Non Charlie in French / also Archive.Today – Point de Bascule) justifying Muslims who would use violence against Charlie Hebdo:
Translation by Point de Bascule[EXCERPT] “One does not have the right to grant oneself all the rights, including that of offending people and hitting them in what is the most sacred to them: the object of their Faith or of their disarray”
If offending is the expression of your freedom, then violence will be the expression of their freedom! No, do not say ‘but’! Assume [your choices]…[…]
One does not have the right to target the prophet when one wants to mock people. If Islamists annoy you… tell them to their faces, without violating their religion and their path with your dark motives.
Stop talking about freedom of expression… but rather [talk] about values and the hierarchy of values. It seems to be important to remind you that, in this hierarchy of values, freedom of conscience comes first. One may not honor it, of course, but one has no right to dishonor it.
Your caricature is a pure fraud.
Furthermore, it is a marketing scheme that will cost the lives of all those who believe that one may laugh at everything, with everybody. It is a declaration of war… a war of religion that no free expression in the world may be proud of.
If offending is the expression of your freedom, then admit that violence will be the expression of their freedom! It is a trade of bad practices.
No, do not say ‘but’! Assume [your choices]…
Revu et corrigé TV program (November 5, 2011): VIDEO Debate between Tariq Ramadan and Charlie Hebdo’s Stéphane Charbonnier (Tariq Ramadan accuses Charlie Hebdo of producing “a humor of cowards.”) [In French]
Yves Delahaie (L’Obs Le plus – November 6, 2011): The arson at Charlie Hebdo: Is Tariq Ramadan talking from both sides of his mouth on the issue? / WebArchive – Archive.Today [In French]
Point de Bascule (November 17, 2014): Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs promotes Islamist Tariq Ramadan as “a man with a vision”
Point de Bascule (January 5, 2015): Islamist penetration of police services – Point de Bascule replies to Radio-Canada’s Senior Director of information, Jean Pelletier (A portion of the article is dedicated to the collaboration between the organization Muslim Presence and the Ottawa Police Service.)
Victoria Ward (The Telegraph – January 7, 2015): Charlie Hebdo cartoonist murdered in Paris terrorist attack was on al-Qaeda wanted list / WebArchive – Archive.Today
Muslim Presence’s bases of operations throughout the world, as they were presented on the organization’s website in 2011. Right, a picture of Tariq Ramadan taken during an activity in the Ivory Coast in 2010.