Friday, September 26, 2008

Harun Yahya: All Terrorists are Darwinists

Der Spiegel has interviewed Harun Yahya, a.k.a. Adnan Oktar, the prominent Muslim creationist. The opening question about why scientists accept evolution yields the stock creationist answer and goes unchallenged:

Adnan Oktar: First of all, there are 100 million fossils that prove creation. And these have never changed in any respect. For example, fish have always been fish, shrimp have always been shrimp, and crabs have always been crabs. And their fossils are on display in every corner of the world. We displayed them in Turkey as well, and people saw them with their own eyes. First and foremost, this is a clear proof. Secondly, in contrast to creation, Darwinism does not have a single piece of evidence demonstrating the theory of evolution. Its proponents don’t have any fossil evidence, of the kind which they should be able to put forward.

Sitting here looking at Donald Prothero's Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why Its Important, and having just read Your Inner Fish by Neil Shubin, I find such statements amazing. That people take this kind of statement seriously is, perhaps, even more so. He rattles the ID cages as well:

SPIEGEL ONLINE: How much were you influenced by Christian movements, the so-called intelligent design movements in Europe and the United States?

Oktar: I find the concept of intelligent design rather dishonest. One should openly stand up for the existence of Allah, should sincerely stand up for religion, for Islam. Or, if one is a Christian, one should honestly stand up for Christianity. This is a theory which claims that things have somehow been created, but it is unknown who created them. I find this rather dishonest, actually. The followers of intelligent design should openly and clearly declare the existence of Allah as the Creator.

Aside from the lack of a theoretical construct, this is the other elephant in the room at the Discovery Institute: that the universe shows design in places, we're just not saying who did it. Such wishy-washiness is what led to Pastafarianism. His take on terrorism is a peculiar bend of honest Islam and creationism:

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Do you really think that someone like Osama bin Laden, who justifies terrorist acts using the Koran and the alleged ungodliness of the west, is following Darwinist ideas?

Oktar: Things are not what they seem to be. You do not see that appearance and style in such people in their youth. Yet, when their actual faith is scrutinized, it emerges that they are genuine materialists and Darwinists. It is impossible for a person who fears Allah to commit terrorist acts because of his faith. Such acts are committed by people who were educated abroad, who received a Darwinist education and who internalized Darwinism, but who later called themselves Muslims. When scrutinized carefully, when their speech and essays are carefully analyzed, we see that all these people are Darwinists.

It is unfortunate that the Der Spiegel interviewer was not equipped to (or chose not to) counter Oktar on his understanding of the fossil record (or his lack of understanding, thereof). Whether you are reading Phillip Johnson or Harun Yahya, that is where the wheels typically fall of. Read the whole thing.

Hat tip to Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs

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