In an article for the newspaper “Corriere della Sera” the well-known journalist Vittorio Messori argues that it would be naive to go on pretending that “Islam terrorism has nothing to do with Islam”. The use of violence in the name of God is widely accepted in Islam, not only by so-called “extremists”.
Just consider this:
A French friend, a Catholic religious in Jerusalem and well-known biblical scholar, told me recently that in their convent, there was an old Muslim who had worked for them for a long, long time as a factotum. Honest, trustworthy and a hard worker, he had become part of the family and all the religious had great affection for him which was sincerely reciprocal. One Friday, the man came back from the mosque with a dejected air about him. The Superior of the House, after insisting, was finally able to make him talk. He said: “Today the Imam who conducts the prayers told us during the sermon that, on the day of the triumph of Allah and his Prophet, which will arrive soon, we will then rid this Holy City of Jews and Christians, and all of those infidels who don’t make a profession of faith at once will have to be killed. This is what the Koran wills and we are bound to obey it.” There was a pause, then: “But have no fear Father, you know that I love all of you. I know what to do if I have to kill you, I’ll find the way not to make you suffer.”
Among Muslims, just as elsewhere, there are many people with natural virtues, i.e. naturally disposed towards kindness, gentleness, tolerance, etc. The question that one might ask with regard to Islam (or any other religion or philosophical conviction) is: what does it make of its adherents?