And regarding religious dialogue Abdul-Rauf stated “this phrase is
inaccurate. Religious dialogue as customary understood is a set of events with discussions in large hotels that result in nothing. Religions do not dialogue and dialogue is not present in the attitudes of the followers regardless of being Muslim or Christian. The image of Muslims in the West is complex which needs to be remedied.”
On May 25th Rauf wrote an op/ed in the New York Daily News that included this:
My colleagues and I are the anti-terrorists. We are the people who want to embolden the vast majority of Muslims who hate terrorism to stand up to the radical rhetoric. Our purpose is to interweave America's Muslim population into the mainstream society.
So to English speaking Americans he says he wants to "interweave America's Muslim population into the mainstream society", but to Arabic speakers he claims he "does not believe in religious dialogue". Is there a contradiction going on here?
Well, Rauf's father was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood andFrank Gaffney at Big Peace provides this quote to help us understand what the Muslim Brotherhood means by the phrase "bridge building".:
For example, Team Obama fails to recognize that when Rauf talks about “bridge-building,” he means it the same way as did Seyyid Qutb, one the Brotherhood’s most important ideologues. In his seminal book, Milestones, Qutb makes clear that this term does not translate into a quest for interfaith and cross-cultural harmony. Rather, it is meant to achieve the infidels’ submission: “The chasm between Islam and Jahiliyyah (unbelievers – the land of gross ignorance and disbelief) is great, and a bridge is not to be built across it so that the two sides may mix with each other, but only so that the people of Jahiliyyah may come over to Islam.”
This attitude makes sense when we accept that Muslims view Islam as the last and superior prophesy, and that conversion from Islam is viewed so unfavorably that it is punished by death.
Which reminds of another quote from Imam Rauf's NY Daily News op/ed:
Freedom of religion is something we hold dear. It is the core of what America is all about, and it is what people worldwide respect about our country. The Koran itself says compulsion in religion is wrong.
But Rauf refuses to sign Former Muslims United's Freedom Pledge:
I renounce, repudiate and oppose any physical intimidation, or worldly and corporal punishment, of apostates from Islam, in whatever way that punishment may be determined or carried out by myself or any other Muslim including the family of the apostate, community, Mosque leaders, Shariah court or judge, and Muslim government or regime.