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Salam Al Marayati
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Salam Al Marayati is executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, an American institution which informs and shapes public opinion and policy by serving as a trusted resource to decision makers in government, media and policy institutions. Salam written extensively on Islam, human rights, democracy, Middle East politics, and the Muslim American communities. Salam also works as an advisor to several political, civic and academic institutions seeking to understand the role of Islam and Muslims in America and throughout the world. You can learn more about Salam's work at Salam can be reached at

Entries by Salam Al Marayati

When Disagreements Turn Destructive

(1) Comments | Posted January 30, 2015 | 12:12 PM


One of the most telling scenes in the film, Lawrence of Arabia, occurs when the British overrun Jerusalem and the Arabs are upset that they have been swindled. "Unfair!" they shout. As portrayed in the movie, the British are conducting themselves in an...

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The Key to Defeating ISIS Is Islam

(121) Comments | Posted September 18, 2014 | 4:32 PM

America needs Islam -- not to convert people to the religion, but as the antidote to the toxic and threatening ideology of ISIS.

Bombs cannot destroy ideas. Decapitating the leadership of ISIS will not stop violent extremism. Our efforts to dismantle al-Qaeda by killing Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda-in-Iraq...

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Colonial Baggage for America in Palestine

(8) Comments | Posted August 12, 2014 | 3:08 PM

Recently a Pentagon report given by Lt. General Michael Flynn indicated that Israel's annihilation of Hamas could be achieved, but at the cost of a more radical group rising from the ashes of Gaza.

The Palestine problem did not start with the creation of Israel in 1948. It...

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Winning the Ideological Battle Against Terrorism

(8) Comments | Posted June 3, 2013 | 4:57 PM

In President Obama's counterterrorism speech at the National Defense University, he said, "The success of American Muslims" is the antidote to al-Qaeda's narrative and that of its affiliates.

On the one hand, the U.S. is winding down its wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and shrinking those theaters...

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Living Within an Interfaith Framework

(3) Comments | Posted December 24, 2012 | 5:29 PM

By Salam Al-Marayati, President of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, and Rev. Ed Bacon, Rector of All Saints Church and author of '8 Habits of Love'

A historic convention recently took place involving American Muslims and All Saints Church in rosy...

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From Religious Polarization to Religious Peacemaking

(17) Comments | Posted December 11, 2012 | 5:57 PM

This week, a historic convention will take place involving American Muslims and All Saints Church in rosy Pasadena -- the first national Muslim convention at a church. We will move to how we collectively work for a cultural climate change that ends the paradigm of polarization. America's religious...

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Muslim and Copts Unite Against Hate and Violence

(4) Comments | Posted October 2, 2012 | 1:50 PM

On Sept. 17, Muslim and Coptic Christian leaders stood shoulder to shoulder at Los Angeles City Hall, condemning both the hate of the anti-Muslim video,"Innocence of Muslims," and the violent reactions to the video. The imagery and prose were inspiring.

The following are some...

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Blasphemy Laws Are Against Islam

(173) Comments | Posted March 16, 2011 | 10:48 AM

Blasphemy laws or laws prohibiting defamation of a religion are incompatible with Islamic thought and philosophy. The concept of Defamation of Religions denies a person their free will to choose -- one of God's greatest gifts to humanity -- and deprives individuals of their right to free speech and expression....

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5 Questions Swirling Around the 'Ground Zero Mosque' Debate

(40) Comments | Posted August 22, 2010 | 11:29 AM

Most of those opposed to the Park51 Muslim cultural center -- known as the "Ground Zero mosque" despite being neither a mosque nor at Ground Zero -- have understandable apprehensions about Muslims. The questions raised by opponents of the cultural center deserve clear, unambiguous answers about Islam in America. That's...

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Anti-Muslim Is Anti-American

(154) Comments | Posted July 27, 2010 | 1:43 PM

From New York to Tennessee to California, mosques and Muslim community centers are meeting a small but fierce swelling resistance from an increasingly vocal minority of local citizens' groups who charge that mosques represent a major threat to America's way of life and central values. Such baseless and hateful attacks...

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Freedom of Speech for Some but Not All

(131) Comments | Posted July 13, 2010 | 12:59 PM

White House correspondent Helen Thomas and CNN Middle East expert Octavia Nasr recently lost their jobs because of their controversial statements related to the Middle East.

Yet there is no outrage, let alone calls for resignation, when two members of Congress commit similar if not worse offenses. Senator Charles Schumer...

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Free 11 Muslim Students Representing America's Conscience

(23) Comments | Posted February 15, 2010 | 1:14 PM

Civic and Political life at the University California of Irvine (UCI) will never be the same after 11 Muslim students chose to speak out at a UCI event sponsoring Israel's Ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren.

The Orange County Register reported on the incident:


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Hate Speech Can Be Countered With Truth, Leadership

(2) Comments | Posted January 12, 2010 | 6:45 PM

The Quran encourages Muslims to promote religious freedom and counter religious bigotry. However, it also upholds the importance of the freedom to express one's own thoughts, even when they may be seen as distasteful or disrespectful by others. The Quran documents the countless attempts to defame the Prophet as a...

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Fort Hood: A Defining Moment for Muslim Americans

(5) Comments | Posted November 12, 2009 | 11:40 AM

To my fellow Muslim Americans,

A moment of truth has arrived for us. We now must demonstrate, beyond the condemnations and condolences, that we are working for America, not merely taking seats on the margins of our society. Are we an integral part of the American fabric or...

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Dear Capitol Hill: We Confess, Muslims Want to Serve America

(35) Comments | Posted October 19, 2009 | 11:39 AM

This week, four Republican members of Congress (Sue Myrick [R-NC], John Shadegg [R-AZ], Paul Broun [R-GA] and Trent Franks [R-AZ]) called on the U.S. House of Representatives' Sergeant-at-Arms to investigate a national Muslim American civil rights organization, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), for encouraging...

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For Iran--Think Long Term, Not Immediate Self-Gratificaton

(1) Comments | Posted October 4, 2009 | 12:01 PM

As in every Middle East crisis the United States has dealt with during the last century, the available options are limited to military confrontation or diplomacy. What gets lost in both options is the most critical factor in the future of the Middle East -- the people. We certainly learned...

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Closing Our Open Society is a Victory for Terrorism

(16) Comments | Posted September 5, 2009 | 2:34 PM

The case of a diverted Air France flight involving Paul-Emile Dupret, a legal counselor to the European Parliament, is causing a stir over the Atlantic even though it's not a story in the US. Dupret opposes US policy on globalization, and for that reason, he is on the No Fly...

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Rifqa, the Reverand and Apostasy

(42) Comments | Posted August 18, 2009 | 1:43 PM

Fathima Rifqa Bary, who goes by Rifqa, is a 17-year-old from Columbus, Ohio who ran away from home -- not an uncommon occurrence for 17-year-olds. But the circumstances surrounding her story have opened a host of legal, cultural and theological issues.

Her Muslim parents moved the family to the U.S....

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Muslims in America

(13) Comments | Posted July 31, 2009 | 3:11 PM

"As Muslims, when we take an oath of citizenship or allegiance, it is tantamount to making an oath with God: "And be true to your bond with God whenever you bind yourselves by a pledge, and do not break [your] oaths after having [freely] confirmed them and having called...
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