Former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has some comments to make about being placed on a list of the "Top 20 Most Dangerous Extremists Around the World" by an organisation with offices in U.S., UK and Germany.
Called the Counter Extremism Project (CEP), it placed Mahathir at number 14.
Other names on the list include the leader of Hezbollah, Neo-Nazis, an anti-Muslim Burmese monk and a spokesman for Al-Qaeda.
Mahathir was included on the list for:
- Often criticising the West, Jewish people and LGBT people.
- His comments about the terrorist attack in Nice, France, in which he said that Muslims have a "right to be angry" and kill French people for past massacres, although "by and large", Muslims do not.
- Supporting ambitions for Muslims in Mindanao, Philippines, a region plagued by violence and secessionist war, to carve out their own state.
CEP did say that, "Mahathir is not directly responsible for specific acts of violence. However, his controversial opinions have led to international condemnation as it was alleged Mahathir supported extremist violence against the West."
Mahathir on Macron
In a Facebook post on Monday, Jan. 11, Mahathir raised a number of objections.
He clarified his comments on the France terrorist attack, which he made in response to President Emmanuel Macron's remarks.
Mahathir claimed that Macron asserted that Islam promotes terrorism, and said this is "totally wrong."
Mahathir added that Islam forbids killing, and if Muslims kill, it is not due to the teachings of Islam.
A quick note on Macron's speech on Islam
According to Al Jazeera, Macron said that "Islam is in crisis" and spoke of tackling radicalisation in an October 2020 speech.
According to French-based EuroNews, Macron later said he was targeting terrorism and those promoting "radical Islam", not the religion as a whole.
"Regurgitated half of what I said"
CEP mentions the following words tweeted by Mahathir, "Muslims have a right to be angry and kill millions of French people for the massacres of the past."
However, CEP did not include the tweet that followed immediately afterwards, which said, "But by and large the Muslims have not applied the 'eye for an eye' law. Muslims don’t. The French shouldn’t. Instead the French should teach their people to respect other people’s feelings."
Mahathir said that by leaving out the follow-up tweet, CEP twisted what he wrote to imply that he advocated terrorism, and said that he was labelled an extremist for criticising the West.
Mahathir: What about Trump, Bush, Blair, Israel?
Mahathir went on to say that if he was considered an extremist, then so should U.S. President Donald Trump.
He referred to the storming of the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters, "largely attributed to his incitement" and Facebook's decision to ban Trump for use of its platform to "incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government."
He also mentioned former U.S. and UK leaders George W. Bush and Tony Blair, claiming they launched the Iraq War based on "falsified claims" which led to the loss of lives.
Mahathir also blamed Israel for the loss of Palestinian lives, although he did not elaborate on specifics.
He added, "It seems that I am vilified for my thoughts while others get away with acts of terror and violence resulting in death and destruction of the weak and the oppressed."
You can see the full post below:
Top image via Getty Images.