Paul Harvey says Islam encourages killing

Paul Harvey says Islam encourages killing

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is calling for an on-air apology from syndicated radio commentator Paul Harvey who said on his Thursday program that Islam “encourages killing.”

Harvey, who has 24 million weekly listeners on some 1,600 radio stations in this country and around the world, made that claim during his Thursday noon commentary.

In that segment, Harvey described the bloody nature of cock fight gambling in Iraq and said: “Add to the thirst for blood a religion which encourages killing, and it is entirely understandable if Americans came to this bloody party unprepared.”

TO LISTEN TO THE SEGMENT, GO TO: Click on the Thursday noon program. The section with the offensive quote begins at 6:53. The quote itself begins at 8:25.

“We had hoped that a respected broadcast professional like Mr. Harvey would not join the growing number of Islamophobic hate-mongers in our society,” said CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “He falsely attributes to Islam two things that are specifically prohibited by our faith, murder and cruelty to animals.” (Islam also prohibits gambling.)

Hooper quoted the Prophet Muhammad, who said one of the “biggest of (the great sins)” is “to murder a human being.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari, 9:10) He also cited the Quran, Islam’s revealed text, which states that when someone takes another’s life, “it would be as if he slew all mankind.” (Quran, 5:32)

On animal cruelty, the Prophet said: “A woman was punished [by God] because of a cat. She had neither provided it with food nor drink, nor set it free so that it might eat the creatures of the earth.” (Sahih Muslim, Hadith 1047)

In another tradition related by the Prophet, a man was rewarded by God for helping a thirsty animal. The man, who had just climbed down a well to get water for himself, saw a dog panting and licking mud because of excessive thirst. He went down the well again and filled his shoe with water for the dog. God thanked him for that deed and forgave his sins.

After relating that story, the Prophet was asked: “Is there a reward for us in serving animals?” He replied: “Yes, there is a reward for serving any (living being).” (Sahih Al-Bukhari, 3:646)

In other Islamic traditions, the Prophet prohibited capturing young birds because of the distress caused to their mother, and rebuked his companions who burnt an ant hill.

Hooper also cited the Quran, which says: “There is no beast that walks on earth and no bird that flies on its two wings that is not [God’s] creature”¦Unto their Sustainer shall they [all] be gathered.” (Quran, 6:38)

In 1999, Harvey issued an on-air apology to Muslims for remarks suggesting that Islam was a “fraudulent religion.” The apology came after hundreds of concerned Muslims called, faxed and e-mailed both Harvey’s office and that of ABC Radio Networks, his program’s syndicator.


Contact Paul Harvey to ask that he apologize on-air for his remarks.


Mr. Paul Harvey
333 N Michigan Ave, Suite 1600
Chicago, IL 60601-4005

Phone: (312) 899-4085
Fax: (312) 899-4088