WASHINGTON, DC – YouTube is protecting hate speech and incitement to violence against the LBGTQ community by removing a MEMRI TV clip exposing a Canadian imam who calls "to stone these people to death." The MEMRI TV clip, posted on March 4 on the MEMRI TV YouTube channel, shows Bangash, at an April 1996 conference, criticizing the West for being "proud of being homosexuals," and saying: "It is time for us to pick up the stones to stone these people to death for [this] abomination... Allah imposes [this responsibility] upon us." He added that something is wrong with Muslims who treat the Jews as friends, and assured his audience that the Jews, Christians, polytheists, and infidels "spare no effort" to ruin Muslims because of their hatred for them (read transcript below).
YouTube removed the clip on March 4 and MEMRI appealed the decision the same day, explaining: "As part of MEMRI’s Reform Project, we expose hate speech, including anti-LGBTQ sentiment (such as this video), and we support reformists who speak out against such hate speech." YouTube denied the appeal on March 5, thus upholding its protection of hate speech and calls for violence against the LGBTQ community.
The MEMRI TV clip is part of the MEMRI Reform Project that identifies and supports those in the Arab and Muslim world who advocate reform and human rights and exposes hate speech against such rights. The Reform Project translates and exposes hate speech in the Arab and Muslim world and informs efforts, including policies, strategies, and legislative initiatives, to address such hate speech. By limiting the clip's distribution, YouTube is preventing the exposure of hate speech and curtailing the fight against it.
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Transcript Of MEMRI TV Clip Censored By YouTube
1996 – Speech 1
Imam Zafar Bangash: "It is those innocent people – children, women, men, young and old – who are being slaughtered and killed through a process of genocide that they call sanctions.
"But I believe that even all of these things pale into insignificance compared with the fitna [discord] that they tried to impose on the Muslims through The Satanic Verses.
"The Satanic Verses represented an assault on the Muslims in a manner which if the Muslims had not stood up to resist, would have opened up the revered personality of Islam to all kinds of ridicule and degradation.
"It was a carefully calculated policy to assault to very foundations of Islam.
"It was for this reason that when Imam Khomeini's fatwa was issued, it was the first direct challenge to the West's political hegemony, that the Muslims are not going to stand up and allow their revered personalities to be brought down to the level of Hollywood and the filth that they are putting out around the rest of the world.
"Also, there is a confusion in the minds of some Muslims who think that the Christians are ahl al-kitab [the people of the book], today's Christians and Jews and so on, and therefore they are our cousins and so forth. First of all, I would like to ask those of my brothers and sisters who think that way to tell me whether the original book that was revealed to either Moses or Jesus – does anybody have a copy of that book? The original book, not the distorted version that they keep on changing every so many years."
"If you do not have a copy of the original book, then these people cannot be considered as ahl al-kitab, because there is no book that we are talking about to which they belong.
"And today, you look at the West – they are not only violating each and every commandment of Allah, but they commit every zul [injustice] every shirk [polytheism] and every crime that any nation on the face of this Earth committed throughout history. Can we have coexistence with such people?
"Their own children in the West are drug addicts. Their own girls – their own daughters and sisters – go around at the age of 10 and 12 and commit fornication and adultery in front of their brothers and their fathers, and they feel proud of this fact.
"They are the ones who feel proud of being homosexuals.
"Everywhere, whether you go to America, or you go to Europe, or you go the Israel, or you go to other parts of the world, they commit this abomination and they feel proud of it. My brothers and sisters, it is not time to live in coexistence with them. It is time for us to pick up the stones to stone these people to death for the abomination that they are committing."
Crowd: "Allah Akbar!"
Imam Zafar Bangash: "It is this responsibility that Allah imposes upon us. My brothers and sisters, I invite you to this challenge. I invite you to this struggle that lies ahead for us, that we confront this jahil [ignorant] civilization, that we consign it to the dustbin of history where it belongs, so that we make the word of Allah uppermost, as promised by Allah, and work towards it so that Allah will choose us as being his chosen servants through whose hands and through whose effort this will be brought about."
1996 – Speech 2
"The president of the United States, the prime minister of Britain, the chancellor of Germany, the president of France, and so on and so forth, and the kings and other lesser breeds, were all there to pay their respects to 60 Jews that were killed in Palestine.
"And Muslims are supposed to be the terrorists, and they deserve collective punishment.
"Well, we never saw the Zionists go and blow up the houses of Baruch Goldstein.
"They did not go and demolish the home of Yigal Amir, who murdered their own prime minister.
"But you know, we as Muslims must know that this can be expected from these people. We shouldn't have any illusion about it. The reason being that Allah has told us in the Quran that these Jews murdered even the prophets of Allah. Did they not kill the Prophet Zachariah, and John [the Baptist]? The Jews killed them, so why should we expect them to treat us any better? I think that we will be remiss if we think that these people are going to be our friends. We must not be under any illusions that people who cannot be friends of Allah and His prophets can be friends of the Muslims, because if they are going to be our [friends], then we must examine our own iman [faith] – then there is something wrong with us, because Allah tells us that you cannot expect any friendship from these people.
"These people – the Jews, the Christians, the mushrikeen [polytheists], and the kuffar [infidels] – will spare no effort to ruin you, and they will do everything in their power to hamper your activities, including harmless activities like holding a conference. They will do everything in their power to hamper your activities, and yet Allah warns us and he says that what they utter with their mouths, what they say on their television screens, what you hear on their radio stations, what you read in their newspapers... Allah says that that is nothing. What they conceal in their hearts towards you is much greater. The hatred that they have towards you is much greater, so we as Muslims have to be conscious of this fact, and if we are conscious of this fact, and we understand their nature, and our responsibilities, then God willing, we cannot go astray."
"About ten days ago, we received a message from the mujahideen in Chechnya. We are, of course, communicating with them on the Internet. We had sent a message to them: 'Please tell us what we can do for you.' And the message that they sent back is really very revealing. We thought that perhaps they will say: 'Please do some fundraising for us, send us medicine, send us weapons...' They said: 'We ask our Muslim brothers and sisters around the world to remember us in their prayers.' Can you imagine the spirit of these people? They don't want you to give them weapons or money – of course, it is our obligation to give them that help, but they only want us to remember them in our prayers.
"God willing, no power in the world can defeat them, least of all these gangsters who are ruling in Russia. But my brothers and sisters, I ask you – it is important for us. We have an obligation. We have to fulfill our responsibility, and Allah expects us to do that. Our responsibility is that we help them financially, we extend help to them materially, so that these brothers will remain steadfast, so that these brothers will be able to continue the struggle, because I am quite confident and I am quite sure that there will be jihad in Chechnya so long as there is even one Chechen alive."