Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Playing the Jihad numbers

When I initially posted "My why do people hate Muslims?" post I expected some valid and invalid criticisms. Happily I got both, and I found that the valid criticisms and my views actually fit well together. I gather these valid criticism misunderstanding can come down to two factors 1) it was just misinterpretation or 2) it was my horrific writing style. This follow up post is here to address a ridiculous claim made that Islam is the most violent religion to grace the Earth yet. Also, do not read into this post as me defending Islam, I just want to point out that these claims are flawed, as Islam while extremely violent is not the most violent religion ever. I think that honor still falls to Christianity with Islam following in second place.

The claim that "Islam has the highest kill rate" was backed by two self citing blog posts which is never a good way to start with statistics. From these blog posts a figure of 270 or 590 million dead is attributed to Islam. If you are wondering why there is such a difference between the numbers, its due to the fact that a wild estimate of 320 million is included in the second estimate. However, even if we exclude this wild estimate and take the number if 270 million world wide there are major flaws with this data. The flaws range from deaths due to slavery (120 million) not being completely attributable to Islam, after all the Christian West was the biggest buyer of slaves. Then their are facts like the Bubonic Plague being attributable to Islamic biological warfare, or that all African Christians are killed by Muslims.When I pointed out what the problem with this line of argumentation is, I was summarily told that it is attributing any deaths by a country that had an Islamic leader or government as Jihad numbers. At this point, I decided to have some fun and applied the same statistics to Christian leaders/wars and this is what I found:

World War 1: 17 million
World War 2: about 70 million
Crusades:  about 1.7 million
Inquisition: unknown (30 thousand to 7 million)
Napoleonic Wars: about 4 million
Thirty Year War: about 7.5 million
French Wars of Religion: 3 million
Hundred Years War: about 1.5 million
Genocide deaths attributable to colonization: Americas (48 million) Africa (8 million, probably more?).
Russian Civil War: 6.7 million
Holocaust: 8.4 million (number not included in WW2)
First and Second Congo War: 4 million
Nigerian Civil War: 1.7 million
Total: About 180.8 million dead

Everyone's favorite Christian enjoying a day out.

Perhaps I should note that this list is not even comprehensive. Yet, I still end with a conservative total of 180 million without making numbers up and attributing things like plagues and slavery as is done in the blogposts.These kinds of tactics in these blogposts are just fear mongering and what I label Islamophobic views. As I said in my original post, there are valid reasons to fear the rise of Islam. However, to make up lies to back your claims is dishonest and creating a trust problem which undermines the effort to draw attention to the religious Islamic plague.