Islam expert Robert Spencer has been threatened with death for his new book, “Did Muhammad Exist?: An Inquiry into the Obscure Origins of Islam.”
Spencer said the threats issued via the social networking site Twitter are part of the increasing pressure by Muslims to impose Islamic law – which bans criticism of Muhammad – on the free world.
Spencer, director of JihadWatch.org, told WND: “This is an increasing tactic on the left, as well as by Muslims. They don’t seem to have any attachment to the principle of freedom of speech.”
Spencer reported that the tweeted threats of beheadings and stabbings came from a Muslim in Australia who goes by “Abdulhakim” on Twitter.
A tweet from “Abdulhakim,” whose Twitter handle is @83_amira, said: “1,200 of your books were burnt in Australia yesterday by me Cause you a liar, lucky you are miles & miles away.”
Another message said: “slandering the prophet is not freedom of speech you dog, scumbag.! I would not slash u, but cut your head off and hang it on the White House.”
Other threats from the same Twitter account called for the death of David Wood, a blogger, and Pamela Geller, author of “Stop the Islamization of America” and co-author, with Spencer, of “The Post-American Presidency.”
The threat to Geller said: “She needs to be hung or slaughtered because of her hatred.”
The reaction apparently was prompted by Spencer’s “Did Muhammad Exist?,” which examines historical records, archaeological findings and pioneering new scholarship to reconstruct what can be known about Muhammad, the Quran and Islam’s early days.
Spencer said his work considers the most fundamental assumptions about Islam’s origins, made by Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
Essentially, he described to WND, the scholarly critique is the type that has been applied to Christianity in the past.
Spencer is the author of several widely acclaimed books about Islam, including “Stealth Jihad: How Radical Islam is Subverting America without Guns or Bombs” and “The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades).”
He holds a master’s degree in religious studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has been studying Islamic theology, law and history in depth for more than three decades.
Spencer told WND that when the threats first became known, some of his contacts in Australia contacted law enforcement.
“They were told the police were going to investigate,” he said.
He said while the person thought to have made the threats is in Australia, “I don’t have any illusions he could have friends in the United States.”
Spencer’s publisher reported that the day after the original threats arrived, “Adam,” who goes by @allahuakbar12, raised the level of concern.
“Its [sic] your fault you brought it upon yourself,” that individual tweeted.
Another Twitter account in favor of violent jihad against Islam’s critics, @frigidfire23, said: “That man would do humanity a great favor! Maybe he should pay you a visit too. World would be much better place without u 2!”
Officials reported the Twitter account @83_amira was then suspended.
Spencer told WND that there have been other recent attempts to threaten and intimidate him.
He reported on his site recently that Nathan Lean, editor-in-chief of Aslan Media, “is the thug who has repeatedly sent me veiled threats, emailing and tweeting what he thinks is specific information about where I live and who my relatives are.”
“The threat is quite clear: He could not possibly have any other reason to send this information to me and to others except to let me know that he thinks he knows where I live, and to alert Leftist and Islamic supremacist thugs who wish to injure or kill me to what he thinks is my location,” Spencer said.
“He thinks that by doing this he can frighten me into silence. He is wrong.”
Spencer said he has forwarded threats from Lean to the FBI, “and they have told me that they’re looking into them.”