The Islamic State, the former Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, wants a Muslim psychiatrist who created cartoon characters based on Islam dead.
The Kuwait Times reported the Islamic State announced in a series of Twitter posts it was seeking the killing of Nayef Al-Mutawa, promising “whoever finds him, kill him, and he will be rewarded.”
The report said Mutawa said he plans to take legal action against the individuals behind the Twitter messages calling for his assassination.
The Islamic State has swept across parts of Iraq, capturing a number of cities and announcing the establishment of an Islamic caliphate that aims to include Italy and Spain.
The Times reported Mutawa defended his comics work, saying he had received clearance from Shariah scholars for his projects, which have drawn criticism from some Muslims in the United States.
Mutawa, a psychiatrist, created “The 99” comic characters to promote Islam, but the Islamic State complains it imitates the “99 names of Allah.”
At JihadWatch, Islam expert Robert Spencer commented that there aren’t more reformers of Islam, because “it happens all too often that when a Muslim speaks out against understandings of Islam that justify violence and supremacism, they are targeted with threats and physical attacks.”
The Islamic State has posted online: “There is no good in us if he remains alive for over three days.”
Mutawa told the Times, “My work has glorified Islam from the U.S. to China for the past 10 years. I really do not believe in ISIL and Qaida. … I don’t care about them.”
WND reported several years ago on plans to bring “The 99” characters from comic books, where they’ve been on display since about 2006, to the silver screen.
The “superhero” cartoons were intended to promote the “99” characteristics of Allah through 99 characters with special powers or abilities.
The plan drew praise from President Obama but prompted an expression of concern from Ted Baehr, publisher of Movieguide. He said the characters “are more villain than hero” because “they represent values contrary to humanity.”
The New York Post published a column describing plans for the Shariah-compliant Muslim superheroes, “including one who fights crime hidden head-to-toe by a burqa.”
“These Islamic butt-kickers are ready to bring truth, justice and indoctrination to impressionable Western minds.”
At the time, Adrian Morgan of Family Security Matters, a think tank, wondered: “Are we going to see a**-kicking Christian superhero nuns called Faith, Hope and Charity … sending Satan into Hell? It’s doubtful!”
A short time after the report, Islam expert Pamela Geller said “The 99” is “mainstreaming the institutionalized oppression of women under Shariah, as exemplified by the burqa-wearing superhero.”
“One would think that the male superheroes would have superpowers strong enough to be able to control themselves without the women having to don cloth coffins.”
She said it would be “another thing if these Islamic superheroes were fighting to combat Islamic supremacism, mad mullahs or monster mullahcracies that slaughter their people, honor kill their wives and children, or ethnically cleanse their non-Muslim minorities.”
“Yes, that would be an Islamic superhero: ‘The Counter-Jihadists.’ Don’t hold your breath, kids. Instead, real reformers and superheroes in Islam, such as Ibn Warraq, Nonie Darwish and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, are demonized and marginalized by Islamic supremacists and Muslim leaders.”
Another WND columnist, Marisa Martin, wrote about the issue last year.
“The American superheroes known as the Justice League all meekly decided to let Muslims teach them how to ‘save’ the world. Islam is not directly addressed in the stories nor proselytized, except for the names and qualities of the players, which must be important or the Saudis whose main export is Wahabism, would be having none of it,” she wrote.
“Kuwait authorities are so thrilled with the success of ‘The 99’ that they created a theme park in their honor in 2009, and more is being planned: movies, a clothing line and all the Disney-type merchandise with a Muslim twist. Al-Mutawa and his creation were featured in a PBS documentary ‘Wham! Bam! Islam!’ The support for keeping Islam moderate is understandable, but the amount of hype and endless congratulation seems unbalanced and a little weird.”