Saturday, December 16, 2006

  • Saturday, December 16, 2006
  • Elder of Ziyon
Your tax dollars at work...from a State Department website.

Muslim-American Rappers Promote Tolerance in Middle East

Native Deen hip-hop group energizes Palestinian youth in Jerusalem
By Carolee Walker
USINFO Staff Writer
Enlarge Photo
Muslim-American rappers Abdul Malik, Joshua Salaam and Naeem Muhammad
Muslim-American rappers Abdul Malik, Joshua Salaam and Naeem Muhammad of Native Deen perform in Jerusalem. (photo: Native Deen)
Washington – When Native Deen took hip-hop music to Jerusalem in fall 2006, the group of Muslim-American rappers was moved deeply by the holiness of the place and the energy of the hundreds of teens who attended their concerts. Yet nothing came close to the connection the performers felt to their faith during their Middle East trip.

“I could feel it in the stone and the rocks,” said Naeem Muhammad of Native Deen, a Muslim-American hip-hop group based near Washington that has a strong following in the United Kingdom and the United States.

“Our music inspires Muslims to be better Muslims, but it also gives other people a better view of our faith,” Joshua Salaam told USINFO in an interview.

The rhythm is there, and the beat is contemporary. But the heart of inspirational hip-hop music is in the powerful rap lyrics coaxing listeners to live better lives and be better people.

Native Deen traveled to Turkey, Dubai, the Palestinian Territories and Israel on behalf of the U.S. Department of State, incorporating the teachings of Islam into songs about respect and humanity. At all the concerts, the performers were greeted like “American superstars,” they said. In Dubai, Native Deen won the 2006 Mahabba Award at an event showcasing musicians, artists and filmmakers inspired to spread Islam through art.

The group, founded in 2000, is known for its positive energy, use of traditional percussion and lyrics focused on tolerance and the teachings of Islam.

“We use the Quran as a source of guidance for us when we write our songs,” said Abdul Malik. “We use the morals and guidelines that we find in the Quran to teach people and to guide people.” This means that the beat, or rhythm, comes second, according to Salaam. The lyrics are the most important aspect of the song, so in Native Deen’s sound, the rap is always in front of the percussion.

“Deen” is the Arabic word for “religion,” or way of life.

While I didn't see anything explicitly offensive in the lyrics, it is clear that the "tolerance" mentioned is only teaching others tolerance for Islam, not teaching Muslims tolerance for other religions or ways of life. In many ways the lyrics are proselytizing, which is a questionable activity for the State Department to be promoting:

He (satan) wants to bring you down, he whispers everyday
You started on the path and he led you astray
I know you will come back, you never feel at peace
You're searching for the truth to put your mind at ease
You know you're missing me, I know what you've been through
When we meet again, we have a lot of work to do

I am the Deen you know
I am the Deen you need
I am the Deen you love
Please come back to me

Your life had just begun, I helped to raise you up
You thought it'd be easy but your life turned out to be rough
You thought I let you down, I never let you go
I'm worried ‘cause you left me and you didn't even know
You know you're gonna die, who knows when that will be
Before you meet Allah you should come back to me

I am the Deen you know
I am the Deen you need
I am the Deen you love
Please come back to me

People coming back, People coming back To Islam, people are coming to this Deen
To Islam, you are invited to this Deen

The leader of the band has a blog where he tries hard not to publicize his true feelings:
We are in Palestine now. I will have to keep this blog short before I start to get heated and make some political statements that will get Native Deen arrested.

All in all, this is something that raises questions about what exactly the State Department is intending with this sponsorship.

EoZ Book:"Protocols: Exposing Modern Antisemitism"


EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz





For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts in recent years


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!

Interesting Blogs


#PayForSlay Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria Alice Walker American Jews AmericanZionism Amnesty Amnesty 2022 analysis anti-semitism anti-Zionism antisemitism apartheid Arab antisemitism arab refugees Arafat archaeology Ari Fuld art Ashrawi ASHREI B'tselem bahrain Balfour bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz Bernie Sanders Biden history Birthright book review Brant Rosen breaking the silence CAIR Campus antisemitism Cardozo cartoon of the day CEDAW Chakindas Chanukah Christians circumcision CJ Werleman Clark Kent coexistence Comix Community Standards conspiracy theories COVID-19 Cyprus Daled Amos Daphne Anson David Applebaum Davis report DCI-P Divest This double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada Ellen Horowitz Embassy EoZ Trump symposium eoz-symposium EoZNews eoztv Erekat Erekat lung transplant EU Euro-Mid Observer European antisemitism Facebook Facebook jail Fake Civilians 2014 Fake Civilians 2019 Farrakhan Fatah featured Features Fervent Embrace fisking flood libel flotilla Forest Rain Forward free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros German Jewry Ghassan Daghlas gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian guest post gunness Haaretz Hadassah hamas Hamas war crimes Hananya Naftali hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hasby 2018 hate speech Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor Hypocrisy ICRC IDF IfNotNow IJ Benjamin Ilan Pappe Ilhan Omar impossible peace incitement indigenous Indonesia infographic international law interview intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya James Zogby jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter Joe Biden John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Joseph Massad Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Judean Rose Judith Butler Kairos Karl Vick Keith Ellison ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Know How to Answer Lebanon leftists Linda Sarsour Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Mairav Zonszein Malaysia Marc Lamont Hill Marjorie Taylor Greene max blumenthal Mazen Adi McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Michael Lynk Michael Ross Miftah Missionaries moderate Islam Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco Mudar Zahran music Muslim Brotherhood Naftali Bennett Nakba Nan Greer Nasser al-Lahham Nation of Islam Natural gas Nazi Netanyahu News nftp NGO Nick Cannon NIF Noah Phillips norpac NSU Matrix NYT Occupation offbeat olive oil Omar Barghouti Omri Boehm Only in Israel Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peace Now Peter Beinart Petra MB philosophy poetry Poland poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist Puar Purim purimshpiel Putin Qaradawi Qassam calendar Quora Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals RealJerusalemStreets reference Reuters Richard Falk Richard Landes Richard Silverstein Right of return Rivkah Lambert Adler Robert Werdine rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Rutgers Saeb Erekat Sarah Schulman Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians Seth Rogen settlements sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shelly Yachimovich Shujaiyeh Simchat Torah Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Sovereignty Speech stamps Superman Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman Tlaib TOI Tomer Ilan Trump Trump Lame Duck Test Tunisia Turkey UAE Accord UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc UNICEF United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA unwra vaccination Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks Winstanley work accident X-washing Y. Ben-David Yemen YMikarov zahran Ziesel zionist attack zoo Zionophobia Ziophobia Zvi

Best posts of the past 6 months


A new, better definition of antisemitism

Blog Archive