The news from Gaza regarding the fates of kidnapped Fox correspondent Steve Centanni and cameraman Olaf Wiig is good. The kidnappers, belonging to the shadowy and previously unknown Holy Jihad Brigades, gave the US until last night to meet their demands – namely, the release of all Muslim prisoners. The deadline passed but the news is still good. PA Interior Ministry spokesman Khaled Abu Hilal assured reporters that the two hostages were safe and healthy and they were expected to be released shortly.
Why? Well it seems the kidnappers have claimed that the two hostages have converted to Islam! I guess you can’t exactly demand the release of all Muslim prisoners in the US and then kill two newly minted Muslim captives that you are holding.
The kidnappers, meanwhile, released new video of Wiig and Centanni. In a written statement attached to the video, the kidnappers claimed the two men had converted to Islam… In one segment of the footage, Wiig is seen sitting cross-legged on the floor, dressed in a beige robe and reading from crumpled notes. “It is Apache helicopters firing hellfire missiles made in America that kill the residents in Gaza,” he said in a halting voice, his face expressionless.
When they are finally released, we’ll be sure to point them to the nearest mosque so that they may offer prayers of thanksgiving to Allah and his prophet Muhamed PBUH. Yeah. Right away. I’m sure that’s the first thing they’re going to want to do.
Conversion to Islam is actually pretty easy. All one has to do is make a single honest recitation of the shahÄdah in Arabic, in front of two Muslim witnesses and poof! According to most Muslims, you are now one of them. Now in case you get kidnapped by Islamic fundamentalists and in doing so suddenly see the truth and virtue of Islam, here’s what you ought to do to make sure your new buddies don’t pull a Daniel Pearl on your head. Here’s the shahÄdah in Arabic:
Ù„Ø¢ Ø§ÙÙ„ÙŽÙ€Ù‡ÙŽ Ø§ÙÙ„Ø§ÙŽÙ‘ Ù„Ù„Ù‡ Ù…ØÙ…Ø¯ Ø±Ø³ÙˆÙ„ Ø§Ù„
And here it is transliterated for those of you who don’t read Arabic:
lÄ ilÄhÄ illÄ-llÄhu; muá¸¥ammadun rasÅ«lu-llÄhi
What does it mean? Simply that “There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”
Pretty easy eh? That’s even easier than the conversion process of the most liberal Jewish denominations! And if you’re kidnapped by certain radical Muslims, according to Ayat al-Sayf (the verse of the sword) you can be coerced into a valid conversion! So it’s all good – even if you’re all weepy from fear and there’s a machete hovering above your head, just say that magic phrase and you will be safe!
Seriously, if you’re a reporter working in Gaza or Iraq, do yourself a favor and tattoo that shahÄdah stuff on your arm. It just might save your life.
Under the fear of death, Centanni was forced to comply with the demands of his captors. “There was a lot of writing,” he said, telling of being forced to give written statements of his work in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Kashmir… He was also forced to convert to Islam… “Don’t get me wrong, I have the highest respect for Islam. We learned a lot of great things about it,” he explained, “but it was something we felt we had to do, because they had the gun… There were times that I thought ‘I’m dead,’ and nowâ€¦I’m not.”
Good on ya! Let that be a lesson to you all! A forced conversion, whether done under threat of death by crazed Islamic terrorists or equally crazed Jewish in laws, is only good as long as the threat remains. I’m sure Centanni and Wiig are going to eat a big fat bacon and cheese sandwich first chance they get!