41 thoughts on “Mark ‘Muntasir’ Halawa, Pimping the Pro-Israel Lecture Circuit – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Well, he IS just about dead on about Irshad Manji. She is every bit as big a phony as he is in her own way. Before she jumped on the fake “disaffected former Muslim” money-and-fame train, she was all about being a militant Lesbian, and as best I know never mentioned a syllable about her tragic history as an oppressed Muslim woman.

    1. A bit like Hirsan Ali as well. The only reason Halawa is right about Manji though is that he’s angry she has a book contract & big fee speaking engagements. If he could get the same he’d be quite content.

      In fact, if he added to his act that he was a reformed drug addict it might make him appear even more sympathetic.

      1. Ah yes, Hirsan Ali, another fraud who has jumped aboard the gravy train. It’s an endless stream, and they are all bloody liars. The irony is that there most likely are a few people out there who have a bad experience with Muslims (which they interpreted as Islam) at the hands of an extremist father/mother/boyfriend/husband, but most of them just don’t seem to be trying to cash in on it. Instead they are apparently trying to move on with their lives.

      2. listen here richard silverdick !!!! how dare you talk shit about people when yourself you are a fraud …low life piece of shit who doesnt have shit to do in life !!! let me tell you something …. Mark halawa is an amazing freind and always will be! he has a big circle of freinds that you’d WISH you’d have. nothing will change any fact about of a good freind he is! watch your words well silverstein !!!

      1. Yes, but unfortunately the likes of Manji, Hirsan Ali, Noni Darwish, and Bridgitte Gabriel (who at least does NOT claim to be a disaffected former Muslim, but a Christian) DO get a mainstream forum far too often. They appear as guests from time to time on the local (NON-right-wing) talk radio station where they are free to spout their lies and slander virtually unchallenged even by talk hosts who are generally more reasonable on the subject of Islam. This station, KGO, is the number one talk radio station in the country, and may be overall number one – not sure. I heard Noni Darweesh on that station last year, and in the short time I could stomach listening she said not one single thing that was not a complete fabrication. These people are generally not presented as being the slightest bit controversial, either.

        It is also interesting – maybe – that on that mostly center-to-leftish-leaning station three of the big-name hosts are knee-jerk Zionist who will side with Israel against all comers. There are only two who are consistently critical of Israel, and who see things from the Palestinian/Arab point of view. One of them (Christine Craft) is a fill-in host who appears once or twice a month at best, the other an obnoxious raving leftist who is on at 1 AM, so isn’t heard by many normal working people.

        1. The Nonie Darwishes, Brigitte Gabriels, and Walid Shoebats are often called upon not only to comment on radio shows but are often solicited to provide endorsements for Islamophobic, right wing books. A flattering recommendation from one of these famous frauds helps other bigots sell their writings, unfortunately. They are also invited by some misguided people to participate in “discussion panels” where they are supposed to provide “balance,” which is the most unfortunate thing of all because these moral and ideological lepers spread nothing but diseased and intolerant thinking.

  2. These leeches and dregs do not exploit the organizations that hire them to spout their lies, because those organizations are trying to con people just like them and those organizations know exactly who they’re dealing with, they’re partners in crime. They’re using each other and deep down they probably hate each other as there’s no honor among those whose aim is to manipulate and deceive.

    They’re all low-lifes exploiting the suffering of people with legitimate causes. They’re exploiting the cause of people who are suffering under oppression and injustice to further their own narcissistic ambitions and they disgust me to the core.

    Ugh! I think I’ll need another shower now. Although I very much appreciate that you expose these frauds for exactly who they are.

  3. richard,

    aish is not a “far right settler group”, they are an educational organization, whose main focus is kiruv.

    btw, other than rumor, any proof that mark has a drug problem or is a con artist?

    oh, and he is as much a palestinian as egyptian born arafat was

    1. Arafat was a Palestinian, born of Palestinian parents who lived most of his life in Palestine. “Mark” Halawa might have Palestinian parents, which makes him a Palestinian, but as far as I know he did not live a day in Palestine. More to the point the story he tells about his “Jewish grandmother” does not pass the giggle test.

      1. I know that this would not surprise you, but one of my informants tells me that Halawa, who calls himself a “Palestinian Jew” (alternately, he’s sometimes known as a “Kuwaiti Jew”) also uses the standard far-right line claiming “there are no such thing as Palestinians.” So I guess he means there’s no such thing as a Palestinian Arab but there such a thing as a Palestinian Jew? Or maybe there are such things as Palestinians, but only when it’s convenient for his argument? Oh what the hell, who can tell what the guy believes & make any sense out of it? He prob. can’t keep it straight himself half the time.

  4. Richard, I agree with everything you say but I would like to point out that there is a large Palestinian community in Kuwait — odd because Kuwait is second only to Saudi Arabia in the Gulf with regard to social conservatism. So it is possible that the guy is telling the truth about being raised in Kuwait AND being Palestinian. I’ve worked with several wonderful, honest, sharp businessmen and academics (yes, all men) there, whose families have been in Kuwait since 1948 when they came as refugees.

    I thought that their position would be tenuous after Arafat backed Iraq’s takeover of Kuwait in 1991, but although there were some exceptions, the personal and business connections generally proved stronger than the missteps of the PLO leadership.

      1. I’d argue that he’s Palestinian if the scenario of him living in Kuwait and never going to Palestine is actually true. Most Jews have never been to Israel (I know… religion vs nationality… but deliberately blurred in Israel’s case). But as I said, I’d also agree that he’s a fraud and an opportunist… just maybe not a fraud on that minor point.

        I find it illogical and sad that zionist groups have to resort to this kind of nonsense. I find it bizarre that some find talks from people like this believable or relevant.

        A (now deceased) Palestinian Anglican friend who was a 1948 refugee in Cairo before coming to the US in the 1950s told me years ago that her extended family had Christian, Shi’a, Sunni and Jewish members living in the US, Europe and South America. I think she was most annoyed/amused at the Catholics… Her forebears had come to Palestine in the 1880s as refugees from Bosnia (they left with the retreating Turks) who had already intermarried — there were Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Islamic members who made the move. Most, although the family quickly intermarried with local Bedouins, became Anglicans after the British grabbed Palestine itself, but some (in Syria at the time) remained or became Catholic.

        The US, on good days, celebrates this sort of diversity. It is a strength, not a weakness, I think.

      2. Richard, I have to agree with Steve on this. There are millions of Palestinians who were not born in Palestine, and who have never set foot there. They identify strongly as Palestinian, and there is absolutely no question they are Palestinian by blood, as well as in heart and mind. I know quite a few Palestinians who were born and grew up in Kuwait because Kuwait and other Gulf states provided good jobs and good opportunities to Palestinians after the 1948, and 1967 ethnic cleansings.

  5. It makes no difference, the guy is a fraud no matter where he comes from. I knew he was looking for a gravy train months ago when he appeared on you previous blog entry. He is just pathetic, an opportunist hoping for his big break a la Hirsi Ali or Walid Shoebat.

  6. I don’t understand where this meme that Manji is Ismaili is coming from. She is not, nor has she ever been, Ismaili. She says so publicly and repeatedly on her website. I’ve seen a few conservative sites, Muslim and non-Muslim, describe her as such.

    1. I had never before heard that she is Ismaili either, but then I mostly try to ignore her and her ilk. It doesn’t really matter much, though. She’s a fraud and a phony, and a hate-and-fear-monger, that’s the bottom line. One think I find quite curious is that when she was all about being a militant lesbian, Islam did not seem to be on her radar at all, though as a female and a homosexual, she had a double whammy going for her if she had wanted to dis Islam. That to me suggests strongly that her current “deep concern” about Islam really is completely opportunistic.

  7. I am wondering why there is a discussion of Halawa’s ancestry or pedigree or whatever, as if it matters – he is an opportunistic fraud, a huckster looking to make money off a phony life story and is just another sleazeball playing on people’s sympathies. Whether he is Palestinian or Kuwaiti does not change the fact that he is a pathetic con man looking for a free ride on the backs of his ancestors, either real or fake.

    1. I brought it it (for better or worse) because in a less friendly setting the one tiny slip or possible point of contention could make Richard’s entire argument suspect and, as I said first, I agree with everything he said.

      Strange world out there. I was in Texas most of last week, and had an otherwise bright guy with responsible job and good education say that he is sure Obama is Islamic because during the campaign he said he had been to all 57 states, and there are 57 Islamic states. (Are there? Never counted.)

      I thought all people like that had metal foil liners in their caps.

      1. I didn’t know there were 57 Islamic states. It’s definitely news to me. Did he stop to think that what Obama said was simply a slip of the tongue? George W. Bush had a lot of them, but no one ever suspected him of being a Muslim. Stupid, yes; Muslim, no.

        I am sure Mark Halawa will find someone gullible to exploit for a little while; then he will disappear back into the woodwork.

  8. Hi, this is Mark Halawa..

    Someone sent me the two articles Richard Silverstein wrote about me.

    I really do not understand what is your problem??? Where did I attack anyone out there??? I’m busy with my own life, and never EVER discussed politics publicly!

    Now you made me a drug addict and a porno star???? All because I spoke about my Jewish roots??? There are others like me.. why don’t you go attack them too?

    It is more insulting to me being called Harsi or Walid Shoebat.. those are losers that would say anything for a buck!

    If I speak, I speak about my journey in life and how the two religions are close.. and I speak at local Mosques, Synagogues and interfaith group gatherings…

    Finally, I’m a Palestinian and I don’t need permission from the Americans or the Pakistanis on this forum..

    Get a life!

    1. I have multiple sources to confirm everything I write about you. Plus, there are truly ugly stories I haven’t even published. But if you continue yr attempt to insinuate yrself into the pro-Israel lecture circuit in Canada & elsewhere & continue seeking private & gov’t funding for yr media projects, I will publish everything about you that I can authenticate. You will not exploit the guilelessness of such Jews for yr own mercenary advancement without my pointing out that you have feet of clay (to say the least).

    2. I don’t need to address the drug addict/porn producer stuff, or for that matter your motivations for what you are doing. All that aside, you are liar and a fraud. There are simply too many holes in your little fairy tale about your allegedly Jewish grandmother, not to mention your discovery of your “true identity” and your Great Jewish Epiphany, which supposedly all took place, all to coincidentally, at the hands of – surprise, surprise! – an Aish Hatorah Rabbi.

      Your problem here is that there are people, such as myself, who have first-hand knowledge of the Arab world, the Muslim world, and of the Jews who have inhabited it for many, many centuries. Some of us, myself included, are very well aware of how society and culture work in that part of the world, including regarding social relations between Jews, Christians, and Muslims, and intermarriages among those groups. Some of us even have first-hand knowledge of Muslim/Jewish intermarriage in the Arab world. Therefore, we know that none of your stories about your grandmother and her marriage, and her situation within the family hold any water at all. So, you might be able to fool a lot of people with your stories, but anyone with any real knowledge can pick them apart piece by piece by piece until there is nothing left but holes.

      You, sir, are a liar and a fraud. Whether you are or are not a drug addict, or former drug addict, or any of the other things that people allege does not change that reality.

    3. Muntasir Halawa, please don’t call yourself a Palestinian because you don’t deserve that title. You are manipulative and a fraud. You publicly speak against Palestinian activism on campus , and support individuals that support racist Israeli policies and apartheid in Palestine.

  9. I trust free speech is honored here.

    It’s “pleasant” to see a so-called promoter of peace like Mr. Silverstein has no problems repeating canards about someone he doesn’t know, Mark Halawa, from unknown sources.

    I don’t know Mr. Halawa personally but what I have read of him indicates he has no unpleasant words for any party involved. I doubt he would be any kind of threat to the pro-“Palestinian” orthodoxy practiced here.

    Shirin(Sweet), madame, are an angry woman who doesn’t know anything about the treatment of Jews and all non-Muslims(infidels, kafirs, dhimmis, najis, etc.). I could speak volumes about the 13 centuries of forced conversion, jizya taxation, and the abuse of dhimmitude but to illustrate the point allow me to share with you, because of your Persian first name, a little vignette about the charming custom forced upon Jews and all non-Muslims in my father’s birthplace, Iran. Since non-Muslims are considered to be ritually unclean on days when it would rain or snow we were not allowed to leave our homes since it was feared our “filth” would somehow wash onto our Muhammadean overlords. Since this and many the other indignities (Indeed two summers ago the current regime under Ahmadinejad was even contemplating bringing back the discriminatory garb that all non-Muslims were forced to wear…) that were inflicted on us are well-known to real students of history you might want to do a little research before attacking Mr. Halawa or anyone else or commenting even in passing about the mythical “tolerant” treatment of non-Muslims under Islam.

    Parveneh Z. Sarshar-Williamson

    1. Gee, I suppose you could have been more boringly predictable with your prattle, but it is difficult to imagine how.

      1. I know Parveneh from other threads on other sites, including her being banned from Facebook. Don’t waste your time on her.

        1. I should clarify about Parveneh; she had a chat with my son on facebook wherein she inquired about him, as a Muslim, offering himself for an a**f**ck five times a day for his death cult god.

          This woman is a sick person and should rightfully be ignored.

    2. Free speech is honored here. But lying, racist, anti-Musim speech is not. You’ve already been banned and slipped around the net. You won’t get through next time.

      The sheer number of lies in this comment is astounding. I was first going to delete it but I thought, no, I’ll leave it for Shirin to eviscerate yr arguments. You deserve her treatment and are asking for it.

      And as for the alleged “unknown sources” criticizing Halawa, they are fully known to me. I know their names, contact info. I know how they know him, when they knew him, where they knew him. They’ve provided bona fides, which is more than I can say for the likes of you.

      Shirin: s/he is all yours.

  10. The Israeli government investigated him up the ying yang regarding his claims and after many years they granted him Israeli citizenship. Believe me, they wouldn’t have done that if they would have discovered fraud. They could have just given him long term residency. Citizenship in Israel under the law of return because they verified his claims.

    1. @ Barbara: You have no idea how the interior ministry works. If Aish HaTorah, Ateret Cohanim and any number of settler groups attest that Halawa is kosher, then he will be approved for citizenship. He could be a piece of hazirfleish, but if useful to them he would be declared kosher (a slight exaggeration, but not by much).

      An “ex-Muslim” who’s seen the error of his ways and converted to Judaism. That guy is worth his weight in Israeli shekels for hasbara purposes. Think of how many shul fundraisers they can send him to to preach the gospel of Muslim hate. The audiences will eat it up.

      1. Hi Richard. I grew up around Jews my whole life. I was surprised that they do not hate Muslims. Why do you believe that in synagogues, somebody is preaching the gospel of Muslim hate?

        1. @ Barbara: You not only don’t know how the interior ministry works, you don’t know how some shuls work, especially Young Israel and others which promote the hate espoused by the settler movement including Aish HaTorah, Ateret Cohanim. You do know that American Orthodox Jews (and some others) have contributed hundreds of millions of dollars to fund settlements and theft of Palestinian lands, don’t you?

          There are unfortunately hundreds of thousands of Jews who hate Muslims, Arabs, etc. There are even Orthodox Jews who hate non-Orthodox Jews like Reform or Conservative Jews. Boy, do you have a lot to learn!

          1. [comment deleted: this is not another venue where you can peddle your pro-settler poison. You have been moderated.]

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