Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Islamic Art, Bridges the World at the Metropolitan Museum

"New Islamic Art Documentary Bridges Worlds" (touring the US )
Daniel Tutt is the Outreach Director at Unity Productions Foundation

"The mainstream portrayal of Islam does not usually deal with transcendent beauty, elegant ornamentation, or intricate calligraphy. But might art be one of the keys to healing some of the chasms and conflicts that have plagued Muslim-West relations over the last 10 years? The power of art to build bridges of understanding is becoming more recognized as a vital component to repairing the Muslim-West divide. The new exhibit on Islamic art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art has already attracted thousands..."

"... the ART of living together." ....OR NOT.....

No apologies.

No regrets for destroying churches and synagogues.

No mention of forced conversions.

The mandatory jizya tax for infidels.

The murders of those who resisted the oppression of Muslim Rule.

Celebrate Islamic Art. 

Explore a 'collaboration' of cultures under Muslim Rule.

The "Beauty" of Islam. A "MIRROR of the INVISIBLE World".


On Thursday, March 15, 2012 (NYC)  6:00 PM I attended a screening of a new documentary at the Metropolitan Museum. A film made by the same team that brought us "Inside Islam; What a Billion Muslims Think" in 2009,  Executive Producer Alex Kronemer and Director, Rob Gardner.

The evening was hosted by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Unity Productions Foundation and the Turkish Cultural Center.

The film,  "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World" followed by a viewing of the new gallery

 "The Art of the Arab Lands: Turkey, Iran, central Asia and later South Asia"



Donna Williams (Chief Audience Development Officer, Metropolitan Museum of Art)   

Sheila Canby (Curator in Charge of Museum's Department of Islamic Art)

Mehmet Kilic ( Vice President, Turkish Cultural Center New York)

Alex Kronemer (Executive Producer, Unity Production Foundation)


Kronemer (a revert to Islam) gave the audience a 'proper' Inter-Faith greeting, including Hindi. He explained, "The purpose of the film is to educate the American public. To display the ART of living together" and that we will be seeing 60 minutes of a 90 minute film.

The film introduced us to the visible and INvisible World of Islamic Art.

DSCN2754 copy

Their goal:

"Working for Peace and Understanding through media and to shed Light on Islamic 'culture'.

Two themes were omitted for the screening (didn't say what they were). I think what we saw were "the Word, Space, Ornament and Color. " We learned that Islamic figurative art is misunderstood.

DSCN2680 copy

We were urged to :

"Embrace good. Beautiful reconciliation. Avoid conflict. Choose LIFE" 

DSCN2834 copy


 A glowing look at Islamic history through the ART of Islamic World. No negatives, no destruction wrought by Muslim conquests, only of the beauty of Islamic Art.

DSCN2792 copy

Islam is Beautiful. Peaceful.  Uplifting.  (Just look at their ART)

DSCN2845 copy


From the Metropolitan Museum, New Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia 

"With its geographic spread and long history, Islamic art was inevitably subject to a wide range of regional and even national styles and influences as well as changes within the various periods of its development. It is all the more remarkable then that, even under these circumstances, Islamic art has always retained its intrinsic quality and unique identity. Just as the religion of Islam embodies a way of life and serves as a cohesive force among ethnically and culturally diverse peoples, the art produced by and for Muslim societies has basic identifying and unifying characteristics. Perhaps the most salient of these is the predilection for all-over surface decoration. The four basic components of Islamic ornament are calligraphy, vegetal patterns, geometric patterns, and figural representation....from the seventh to the nineteenth century."


DSCN2848 copy

Some quotes I notated from the film, 

"Islamic Art. Part of who 'we' are today. Sheds light on our SHARED history. An anchor. A bridge.

An incredible journey. Beneath the surface. Mirror Images of the World. Physical manifestations. Mystery. Inspiration.  'Invisible' pictures of nine countries; 1400 years of history in the making. Beautiful. Dramatic. Some buildings were opened just for this documentary."

DSCN2719 copy

Notes continued, "THE POWER OF IDEAS. Tell us what's BEST in us. HOPE is common thread in these great works of Muslim artisans. The conflict and contact of civilizations. "Sometimes" political. A clash of civilizations BUT they CAME TOGETHER IN ART.
Most that was 'troubled' was forgotten. What was good, ART... survived. " 

DSCN2814 copy


In the film, as Islam spreads rapidly across the map, ravaging Europe, the Middle East, Africa, India, we are told this is when ' Islamic Art "developed" ' (AND IT WAS GOOD)

Part 2: THE WORD

Dawn. 610 AD. The Word of God. What Man Did Not know. The Quran was God's Gift to Mankind.

DSCN2738 copy

Film jumps now to Jerusalem. 692 AD and the "Dome of the Rock", where "Big Mo' was supposed to have 'gone to heaven'.  (Susan Sarandon recites this narrative). We are told, the Arabic inscription that encircles the Dome makes it a HALO...but this is better than a Christian halo, cause its from the Qur'an (The Word). The environment is surrounded by The Word....

DSCN2751 copy

And also SURROUNDED by minarets. But, it the 21st c. Why not APOLOGIZE. Let it be a church as INTENDED    ...........    R-E-S-P-E-C-T   ..........

Mosque - Hagia Sophia

We are told the focus when writing the words is on "the ART". Because it's calligraphy. ART. And its tools, 'Artists' tools. The Nib is trimmed to a certain type of point. Very important. Mystical. And the creation of paper made calligraphy even better. Paper was from China,  the China of the Islamic Caliphate. But also, God speaks thru pen to paper. A meditation. Looking to see the divine. The Divine Presence in the Words.

DSCN2811 copy

"War. Conflict. Triumph. Catastrophe. What endured? Creativity. Intelligence. The TRUE Legacy of Islam is Islamic ART."

 DSCN2550 copy

ARCHITECTURE is the MIRROR of the Invisible World. The 7th c was 'the turning point in history (no kidding)

DSCN2727 copy

Part 3 - SPACE

The first mosques were simple unadorned brick. Damascus (Syria) 715 AD has one of the oldest. The great mosque has the largest mosaic in the world.

The largest mud brick building in the world is the Great Mosque of Djenné in Mali.

Notes from screening continue:

"Violent Muslim Rebellion. Went to North Africa. 14th c Spain.  To Cordoba. They needed artisans who could make the mosaics.  It was a distinct art, different from Byzantine/Roman.

  1453.  Muslims captured Constantinople, aka Istanbul. Suleiman was a great Cultural Patron. 16th c Making beautiful things; creating a NEW Empire. Like Solomon. Jerusalem and the Dome of the Rock. Dome was worth re-doing. 1558.  He was a great patron architect. The Hagia Sophia. BETTER things were added. They IMPROVED it."

DSCN2877 copy


Quote from another article, University of Illinois Landscape Architecture Prof. Fairchild Ruggles points out,

“Sometimes material objects can be the bridge between one world and another. Translucent glass is beautiful regardless of your religious background. Monumental tall domes that stretch over the heads like the heavens above are awesome whoever you are.”

DSCN2773 copy


"Heaven. Reflects deep interest in geometry. Central to Islam. Social need based on geometry. Directional time. prayer. navigate desert.

 Secular, worldly images. Figurative Islamic Art. In Spain. 10th c. Griffins, Lions, Ivory, men on Horse. Regarding pictures of Mohammed, Muslims feared doing.

Textiles (faces). 16th c. India (Moghuls).  Diverse Heritage. Stone inlay. Cut and shape semi-precious stones. Jasper. Topaz. Flora. Fauna. Dramatic Islamic Art.

The Taj Mahal (1628) Love for wife in this mausoleum for woman who was so special to him, the mother of his children (no mention of other wives and other children)

The Taj Mahal, Agra, India

In Qur'an we are told: 

 " God said, ' To know me, know my creations.' "

The Gallery;

 After the screening we walked to the second floor. Had lots of freedom to walk around this new gallery,  taking pictures and video. Seemed to be no restrictions. It's laid out well. Colorful. Attractive.

DSCN2568 copy

DSCN2666 copy

There were many Muslim families and couples taking in the screening and gallery. I am assuming  this gallery will do well, as they tell their friends and families to check out the Islamic Art Tribute.  Still feel that the lack of a critique, of who influenced whom, was missing. Whose art was it really' Who gets the credit. ( guess that's why they call it a  'collaboration')

Three Slides shows

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3


Islamic Art TV

" It explores themes such as the Word, Space, Ornament, Color and Water and presents the stories behind many great masterworks of Islamic Art and Architecture.

The film explores the richness of Islamic art in objects big and small, from great ornamented palaces and the play of light in monumental mosques to the exquisite beauty of ceramics, carved boxes, paintings and metal work. It revels in the use of color and finds commonalities in a shared artistic heritage with the West and East. The film also examines the unique ways in which Islamic art turns calligraphy and the written word into masterpieces and develops water into an expressive, useful art form."

Trailer for the documentary


No discussion of forced conversions. No mention of cultures obliterated, just cultural collaboration. 

DSCN2590 copy

The destruction of churches and synagogues unmentioned just like Islamic slavery of the infidel (still happening in the world today)

DSCN2662 copy

 And as the Muslim Invasion continues, their version of history goes unchallenged in this visible and invisible world of the 21st c.

A Mirror of the World....


Friday, March 23, 2012

An Evening with Pamela Geller at ZOA-Philadelphia (VIDEO)"The March of Islamic Supremacists"

On the evening of March 19, 2012, in Philadelphia, Pamela Geller of, SIOA (Stop Islamization of America), AFDI  (American Freedom Defense Initiative) and SION (Stop Islamization of Nations) gave a talk to a 'full house' at ZOA-Philadelphia.

 Ms Geller's topic for the evening:  

"The March of Islamic Supremacists: Implications for America, Israel and the West and How To Stop It".


Pamela Geller, is also the author of Stop the Islamization of America: A Practical Guide to the Resistance

And her associate, Robert Spencer ( has a new book coming out (Amazon link here)

 As for Ms. Geller, if you've never heard her speak, this is a great place to start. And for those who know and respect her already, it was a fabulous evening to inspire everyone to forge ahead, as part of a team, against the Islamist Hate Machine.


Part 1 is brief introductions by ZOA executive officers, Steve Feldman and Lee Bender

Part 2 is Ms. Geller's riveting, passionate and vitally important speech from  ".... today's "Paulette" Revere and blogger extraordinaire".

Part 3 is a Q and A with the audience and Pamela Geller,  moderated by Steve Feldman


Coming up ( on April 29, 2012 in Dearborn, Michigan) If you can, please join Geller and Spencer at the Jessica Mokdad " Human Rights Conference"

Mokdad 6

And on September 11, 2012,  SION will hold its First Session of a World Congress in Defense of Free Speech in NYC. Be sure to bookmark this Face Book Link  for updates.

Individually and as a formidable team, Geller and Spencer have lead the way but they can't do it all.  Get involved. Speak up. Speak out. It's not enough to write letters-to-the-editor anymore....

 ++                       ++                                      ++

Saturday, March 17, 2012

"Stop The Lies The Phoney Cries" Protest JCC-NY's "Combating Islamophobia" ( 3-14-12)

THE EVENT - March 14, 2012


 "Combating Islamophobia" with Rabbi Marc Schneier ( co-founder of the Foundation For Ethnic Understanding, which fosters “twinning” programs between mosques and synagogues). Imam Shamsi-Ali and Russell Simmons (who was a NO-Show) 


This was at the JCC of Manhattan (Amsterdam and W. 76th Street) and moderated by Chelsea Clinton.

From the JCC website:

"Join us for a rare evening of conversation with the leadership of The Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, Rabbi Marc Schneier and Russell Simmons, as they discuss their efforts to combat Islamophobia and anti-Semitism, promoting understanding and reconciliation through face-to-face Muslim-Jewish dialogue."

It was a Sold-Out Event but that didn't stop a group of concerned citizens, Jewish, Christian and Hindi, from coming out to protest this very one-sided 'discussion' in front of the JCC.

     ++                ++


For centuries Islam and Sharia have been incompatible and intolerant of the West and in more modern times, with any form of democracy. Creating the false premise that only "Islamophobes' criticize Islam is foolish and dangerous and those inside the JCC, with blinders on, have chosen to ignore reality while 'Building Bridges' to No Where.

The message OUTSIDE:

Helen Freedman of AFSI (Americans For A Safe Israel) spoke eloquently

Some pictures of this heartfelt and seriously important protest:

 DSCN2457 copy2

 DSCN2428 copy

DSCN2432 copy

 DSCN2462 copy

DSCN2444 copy

DSCN2460 copy

A few more pictures are here .

The JCC missed an opportunity to have a more  balanced and open the discussion, to defend and educate... If only....


You can read more on the foolishness inside and the passionate protest outside here: "New York City "Islamophobia" Event Ignores What We're Afraid of..."


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

National Security and Media Conference Videos - NYC- 2012

The Conference,  National Security and The New Media,was comprised of Two Panels, at the Union League Club - NYC- Feb 28, 2012.

 Not all speakers are posted. Those are Sam Nunberg  in Panel 1 and Vilma Petrash in Panel 2. Cynthia Farhat , Panel 2, was unable to attend.

                                                 ++       ++

         [The audio has a slight tin quality as I was unable to patch in to sound system.]

                                                  ++       ++

                                Panel 1 : "Growing Censorship of Free Speech"

Frank Gaffney - Center For Security Policy- Opening statement (Part 1)

Fred Grandy - Former Congressman-Iowa (R) - Moderator - Panel 1 ( Part 2)

Brooke Goldstein - Director, Lawfare Project -(Part 3)

Lawfare; getting sued for speaking out. 

Gave only a few examples of people and organizations sued:
Wall Street Journal, Rachel Ehrenfeld, Ezra Levant, Mark Steyn, Elizabeth Sabaditch-Wolff , Joe Kaufman, cartoonist in Denmark. All frivolous and meant to intimidate; to silence

CAIR the self-appointed representative of Muslim Community. Muslim Community is told to Build a Wall of Resistance. Forget "If you see something, Say Something". Don't Go to the FBI

Hillary Clinton met with the OIC. Government and media redacts "Islam" and "Jihad". FBI has a Black List of people who can no longer teach and instruct about Islam.

 Andy McCarthy - Former Chief Assistant  U.S. Attorney - (Part 4)

Lawfare, a legal process used like weapons on a battlefield. U'S is an overly litigious society. They use this to file  frivolous lawsuits, knowing they won't win, to intimidate; to pressure.

What is a threat? Terrorism remains on front; understood thru the prism of the Blind Sheik. Extremists, sharia. Nothing irrational, tthe fear of Jihad and Sharia Law

They say, What's to fear?" While they bludgeon us to accept Sharia; Lawfare.

Muslim Brotherhood a sophisticated organization.

Terrorism is one-item on the menu.

Advance implementing Sharia with whatever works.
Because America is obsessed with legal process, they use Law are to advance Sharia.
Infiltrate our legal system and government.
This goes back three administrations. Islam is insidfe the councils of government.

They outlaw materials that expose as being in bad-taste. We used to call this EVIDENCE

Our protection against this infiltration is to speak freely

They use coercive power to discourage; to extinguish ability to study, examine, expose

He concludes, "... if not supporting protecting America and our Constitution then they need to be removed. And we need to do that."

Panel 1 - Q and A (Part 5) Due to time constraints the Q and A was brief, about 15 minutes. But the panel was able to answer in detail three questions.

         Panel 2- "Escalating State Violence Against Political and Religious Expression "

The always engaging investigative journalist, Claudia Rosett - Journalist in Residence, Foundation For Defense of Democracies - (Part 6)

 State violence. Religious Expression. Stats are appalling. 
Defining moment, 1989, Bejing

First lesson of journalism, start with the high points.
What does that mean?

Tiananmen Square, people rising up in the streets. military rolling in; shooting people down
Blood in the streets. Names never recorded. Died in front of CNN cameras

Fraught with meaning

In 2005- In Beirut. The people were begging  for The Truth. 
People rise up over and over with "Please tell the Truth"

Is this escalating violence or escalating resistance.
She acknowledges that as a journalist, she is privileged. She has an American Passport.

 Too often those who are supported in an uprising are as corrupt as those they overthrow. 
And there are risks for those who expose that.

Libya Rebellion. Uprising. often it is asked where are the Real Democrats. She points out, too often they have been murdered

Journalists, bloggers, technology, speed of video; we know more now than ever before. 
Flood of info. We have an opportunity to lead. It matters tremendously.

The Conference Concluded with the luncheon and the Mightier Pen Award which was given to Roger Ailes, Chairman and CEO FOX News; Chairman, FOX Television Stations, Inc.

Commissioner Ray Kelly was there as well( he didn't speak) and Monica Crowley spoke just before Ailes.  Unfortunately, we were asked not to film that portion.

Conference was great.Very nice to be amongst our own. Solid citizens who understand the many threats to our freedoms from within and globally.

A smart crowd, warriors all....

++             ++             ++