I received an email yesterday pointing out how much of Old Testament history happened in or referred to the area that is today’s Iraq. That part of the email was fairly accurate. Then it added this alleged quotation from the Koran, the holy book of Islam.

Quran (9:11) “For it is written that a son of Arabia would awaken a fearsome Eagle. The wrath of the Eagle would be felt throughout the lands of Allah and lo, while some of the people trembled in despair still more rejoiced; for the wrath of the Eagle cleansed the lands of Allah; and there was peace.”

So I dug out the copy of the Koran I got off ebay a year ago and looked up 9:11. We’ve been mislead.
Koran 9:11 actually says,
if they repent,
establish regular prayers,
and practice regular charity,
they are your brethren in Faith …

So I think:

  1. Wow. There may even be hope for US leaders?
  2. Who makes up this stuff (the false quote above)? Who keeps circulating it? It’s REALLY offensive! Do you see why? (If this were one of my classes, I’d press that question a bit. Why do I take offense at this? What is it that would be so offensive in this quote to many people – and not just to Muslims? Point something out to me.)

Urban Legends says this about the ‘quote’:

No, this isn’t a legitimate quotation from the Quran (or Koran), the sacred text of Islam. The chapter and verse citation quoted above is a leg-pull, an obvious play on the USA’s (the Eagle) launching of military action against Afghanistan and Iraq (the “lands of Allah”) in response to the September 11 terrorist attacks on America organized by Osama bin Laden (the “son of Arabia awakening a fearsome eagle”). That the chapter and verse selection match the date of the terrorist attacks (9:11) is another giveaway to the joke.

Depending upon which translation of the Quran one uses, the section corresponding to chapter 9, verse 11 actually reads something like this:

But if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, they are your brethren in faith; and We make the communications clear for a people who know.

(“The poor rate” is a tax, not on income but on holdings. It was a welfare provision, and by taxing holdings it would (at least in theory) affect people year after year even if they managed to hide their income.)