Independence Day and Ramadan: A perfect storm?

Obama says Ramadan is for "spiritual reflection"; the Overseas Security Advisory Council warns, "a call to martyrdom during the month may hold a special allure to some."

Ready for the Fourth of July?
Ready for the Fourth of July?

CHARLOTTE, N.C., July 4, 2016 — Just before Ramadan, Islamic scholar President Obama spoke of a month of spiritual reflection for Muslims. He once called ISIS a jayvee team. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said we could solve the problem of terrorism with “compassion and love.”

Ramadan will conclude its 30 days of spiritual reflection on Tuesday, following terrorist attacks and carnage in Orlando, Afghanistan, Kenya, Lebanon, Istanbul, Bangladesh and Baghdad. That’s a whole lot of reflection, don’t you think?

America’s Independence Day falls just one day before Ramadan ends, so there could be more fireworks in the making, and not the “oooohhh aaaahhh” kind we love so much.

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The Islamic State called upon all Muslims to carry out terrorist attacks during what one spokesman termed “the month of conquest and jihad.”

Secretary of State John Kerry said that all of this recent terror activity is because ISIS is on the run. The president says over and over again that ISIS is not Islam.

In 610, the Prophet Muhammad went to a cave near Mecca and prayed during Ramadan. He returned home to tell his wife that he had had a revelation. From that point forward the world has never been the same, though it took Muhammad until 622 to gain acceptance when he undertook the hijra and migrated to Medina.

During the last 10 years of his life, the prophet used Ramadan as an opportunity to take advantage of the so-called time of “reflection.” It is thus no surprise that ISIS, which supposedly has nothing to do with Islam by the way, would use that 30-day period to remind the world that there are 14 centuries of precedent for killing innocent non-Muslims.

The U.S.-led Overseas Security Advisory Council warned that the ISIS threat prior to Ramadan could be credible due to the importance of personal sacrifice during the 30 days of fasting. “According to Islamic practice, sacrifice during Ramadan can be considered more valuable than that made at other times, so a call to martyrdom during the month may hold a special allure to some.”

This has been going on for 1,400 years. Did we honestly need a government report to make us aware that it might happen again in 2016?

Yes, we did because the majority of Westerners still do not understand, or care to understand the basic tenets of Islam. This includes the president of the United States, who grew up in a Muslim country.

On the other hand, Obama does get it, he just refuses to acknowledge that Islam is not what he says it is and is far more dangerous than he will admit.

Unlike Western holidays, Ramadan follows the Islamic calendar, which is shorter than the Gregorian calendar used by most of the rest of the world. Ramadan falls during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, occurring earlier than the previous year by several days. Ramadan 2016 began on June 5 and concludes on July 5, the day following U.S. Independence Day.

Ramadan lasts 29 or 30 days, depending upon the position of the moon. Though it may be expected to begin on a certain date, if the moon does not align properly it may be delayed by a day.

The coincidence of the Fourth of July celebration and the end of Ramadan appear to be a perfect storm for potential terrorist events in the U.S. Throughout the United States there will be large gatherings of people for parades, concerts, fireworks and the like.

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In its pre-Ramadan statement, ISIS warned, “get prepared, be ready … to make it a month of calamity everywhere for nonbelievers … especially for the fighters and supporters of the caliphate in Europe and America.”

This Fourth of July is a time for all Americans to be vigilant while their Muslim counterparts are “spiritually reflecting.”

America was founded by giants, men of wisdom and foresight. We have been blessed with presidents who, when faced with deadly national peril, rose to greatness. Once upon a time we had presidents who led the country and kept our citizens safe because it was their obligation to do so. Let us hope that this Independence Day does not become an occasion for too much remembrance of a past that was and will never be again.

Bob Taylor has been traveling the world for more than 30 years as a writer and award-winning television producer focusing on international events, people and cultures around the globe. Taylor is founder of the Magellan Travel Club (

Read more of What in the World and Bob Taylor at Communities Digital News. Follow Bob on Twitter @MrPeabod

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