Secular Jihadists profile
Secular Jihadists
Secular Jihadists
Secular Jihadists is a podcast with Ali Rizvi and Armin Navabi, two ex-Muslims trying to spread atheism, secularism and enlightenment values in the Islamic world: SecularJihadists.com
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Access to patron only content which includes: Live video discussions with our guests and access to the video link after (audio links will be public). Link to live video of our private patron meetings. and access to the video link after (no public links for the audio of these meetings will remain private). Access to join private Facebook group from SJME patrons.

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Recent posts

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Secular Jihadists

War With Iran?

https://youtu.be/yZuU6EerE4A
Start time: Sep 20, around 9:00 pm PST
On September 14, a drone and missile attack on Saudi oil facilities cut the kingdom's oil production in half and sent markets spinning. The Trump administration determined that Iran was responsible, with a series of provocations that includes the Islamic Republic shooting down a Navy drone in June. With the recent firing of Iran hawk John Bolton, the cancellation of the Iran Deal, and Iran promising an all-out war if it is attacked, there is increasing uncertainty about what will happen next. Join Armin and Ali as they unpack all of this.
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Secular Jihadists

EP115: EXCLUSIVE: A Gay Atheist Speaks to Us from Pakistan

https://youtu.be/Nski5_7jLBw
“Zac” (not his real name) joined us from Pakistan to talk about what it’s like on the ground there for the underground LGBT community and the growing (but notoriously secret) ex-Muslim atheist voices. He is also launching The Sinning Skeptics, the very first secular podcast out of Pakistan. This brave young man, who grew up in Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates, has an incredible story to tell, and you will learn a lot from him, as we did. Don’t miss it.
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Secular Jihadists

EP114: Pakistan is Worried About Its Youth Leaving Islam: with Harris Sultan

https://youtu.be/sKj6Zs185t8
 Harris Sultan is one of the only Pakistani atheists who makes his videos in Urdu, and recently hosted debates on religion and Islam with top Pakistani celebrity Hamza Ali Abbasi. He is also the author of "The Curse of God." Recently blocked from Facebook (possibly because of his increasing prominence in Pakistan, where blasphemy is punishable by death), Harris joins the podcast to talk about recent polling in the Muslim world showing the rise of the non-religious, the increasing profile of the non-religious in Pakistan, how things may (or may not) change under the new Prime Minister, Imran Khan, Pakistan's censorship of and crackdown on atheist and secular bloggers in recent years, and much more. Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP113: The Atheist Movement's Political Divide: With Seth Andrews

https://youtu.be/s0QhSQSt164
Seth Andrews is a pioneering legend in atheist activism, a former Christian broadcaster, and one of the most avid supporters of the Ex-Muslim movement. He joins us on Secular Jihadists as we talk about political fracturing within the atheist movement, problems with our fellow leftist liberals, free speech, cancel culture, "milkshaking," the damage Trumpism has done to the ex-Muslim movement, US politics, and lots more. For those of you feeling caught between left-wing hypocrisy and right-wing bigotry, this is a must-listen episode. Don't miss it!
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Secular Jihadists

EP112: The Former White Nationalist: With Leon Korteweg

YouTube keeps removing this episode so we are posting the Soundcloud link instead!
https://soundcloud.com/secular-jihadists/ep112-the-former-white?in=secular-jihadists/sets/secular-jihadists-podcast
As a youth, Leon Korteweg joined a neo-Nazi group in the Netherlands, dabbled in Holocaust denial, resisted what he thought was the replacement of the white race with immigrants, and dreamed about an ethnostate. Today, he speaks out against nationalist and religious tribalism in all its forms, and warns about the dangers of radicalization. We talk about the factors that led him to be a white nationalist, the factors that helped him abandon the ideology, the parallels between white supremacist terrorism and Islamic terrorism, the recent rise of far right authoritarian populism, the left's failures in understanding and countering this problem, the differences between far-right and far-left violence, the El Paso and Dayton shootings, Christchurch, incels, and the most effective approaches to counter the threat of radicalization among (mostly) young men. This is an eye-opening conversation that couldn't be more important or relevant in these times. Don't miss it.
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Secular Jihadists

EP111: The Atheist Who Escaped Egypt 🏃‍♂️ With Mohamed Hisham

https://youtu.be/_21GDr9yRGQ
Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/45650

"I'm an atheist, which means I don't believe in God. I don't believe in him." These words should be harmless to anyone who advocates for free expression. But Mohamed Hisham said them on a national TV show in Muslim-majority Egypt. He was aggressively thrown off the show, was beaten at home, threatened constantly with death, and faced serious jail time. In time, with a campaign headed by Troy Garnaut and supported by prominent public voices like (our previous guest) Sam Harris and our own Armin Navabi, Mohamed was able to escape Egypt, and now lives as an openly gay Arab atheist in Germany. He did us the honor of telling us his incredible story—joining us from the refugee center he is currently staying at. Don’t miss this.
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Secular Jihadists

Armin Talks to Ali Dawah, an Islamic Preacher in London ☪️

https://youtu.be/YpmDvWUZb9k
Popular self-styled Islamic YouTube preacher Ali Dawah challenged us to have a video conversation. When we tried to schedule it, he deflected. Fortunately, Armin was able to meet him in person to have that conversation—and what a conversation it was. Check this out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP110: We Speak to a “Lay Muslim” 🙋🏽‍♂️ with Mohammed Ali Saadi

https://youtu.be/QZFEJL-I_LA
Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/40535

Mohammed Ali Saadi is a self-described "lay Muslim" who wants to have conversations with ex-Muslims about some of our areas of disagreement. Should we give credit to Islam for the good deeds of Muslims? Are our skeptical analyses of Islamic history and scripture just historical revisionism? What do Muslims like Saadi think we have gotten wrong in our previous podcast episodes? We get into this and a lot more. Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP108: Apostate Prophet 🕋 The Ex-Muslim YouTuber With a Mission

https://youtu.be/fU5vsksUGHU
Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/36133

With over 150,000 subscribers and counting, The Apostate Prophet, an ex-Muslim, is known for his illuminating and well-thought-out videos, biting satire, and commitment to share his views about his former religion openly. He recently launched an excellent, in-depth video on scientific mistakes in the Quran. Check out our conversation.
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Secular Jihadists

EP107: "I Am Somali—and Not Muslim" 💃🏿 With Autumn Sherif

https://youtu.be/Az1ILPuSCNE
Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/37234
Autumn Sherif brought the house down when she performed on "The Voice" at age 19. This year, the immensely talented and popular Somali-Dutch-British singer decided to speak publicly about her upbringing as a Muslim (she was wearing the hijab at "age 8", and why she does not identify as one anymore. Along with other prominent public figures like Zayn Malik and Jameela Jamil who came from Muslim backgrounds but no longer believe in Islam, Autumn's story is characteristic of countless young people in the world today who are embracing reason and independence over faith. AND SHE SANG FOR US. TWICE! Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

Surviving Islam as an African Woman 👩🏾 With Halima Salat

https://youtu.be/13glrANO4ZM
She is a survivor of FGM (female genital mutilation) and underwent a brutal, violent ruqyah (exorcism) when she tried to save another little girl from it. And that’s not all. We are joined by the Somali-Kenyan-Dutch ex-Muslim journalist, poet, and activist Halima Salat, who once worked as a senior TV reporter in the state-owned Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, and has an incredible story to tell. Check it out.

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Secular Jihadists

EP105: Translating Secular Literature to Arabic and Beyond 📚 The Translations Project

https://youtu.be/dIl16OgsVZQ
Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/32398

Five years ago, Melissa Krawczyk wanted to be a missionary and Bible translator and despised Richard Dawkins. Today, she is the Director of his foundation's Translations Project, which (in collaboration with the Center for Inquiry) is committed to the mission of translating secular and atheist literature to Arabic and other languages across the Muslim world. She has also worked with the foundation's Secular Rescue project, which helps persecuted atheists in oppressive countries escape them. Melissa is an engineer and a polyglot who has studied Arabic for close to fifteen years. She joined us to talk about her amazing work, her personal story, and lots more. Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

Criticizing Israel ✡️ What Isn’t Anti-Semitism?

https://youtu.be/_guGGWR1c_8
The New York Times swears off political cartoons after being criticized for an allegedly anti-Semitic cartoon. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez receives both praise and criticism for referring to border detention centers where children are separated from their parents as concentration camps. With conservatives and liberals increasingly pointing fingers at each other for being anti-Semitic, is the term becoming a meaningless political tool? We’re joined by filmmaker Jay Shapiro to talk about all of this, his Jewish upbringing, and lots more. Don’t miss it.
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Secular Jihadists

EP104: Teaching Muslim Children in Birmingham 🏳️‍🌈

https://youtu.be/8aSz5uOaC-Q

Watch the video version of this conversation (for patrons): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/31545

Primary schools in Birmingham, England have been dealing with growing protests—almost entirely from the city’s Muslim community—for teaching children about LGBTQ+ relationships. Muslim homophobia is confusing to many liberal Westerners: on one hand, they don’t want to be seen as “Islamophobic.” On the other, they want to weed out homophobia everywhere. What to do when the homophobia is coming from the Muslim community? In this episode, we speak to Sophia Johnson, who taught at one of these schools, Anderton Park Primary, for five years. As we learn, Muslim children in the UK are facing countless challenges beyond this one as well, and many white liberals are afraid to bring them up for fear of being called “Islamophobic.” This silence harms children and impedes their education. And Sophia, a self-described left-liberal, has some fantastic insights into this, rooted in her real experience. She’s also a great guitar player and musician! Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP103: Strange Bedfellows 🤝 Israel & Saudi Arabia United Against Iran


https://youtu.be/FHwrHtiLMEU

Watch the video version of this show: https://youtu.be/s7jHNNaVWzo 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently tweeted about an open meeting of "Arab countries sitting down together with Israel in order to advance the common interest of war with Iran." He later deleted the tweet, ending it instead with "combating Iran." Meanwhile, sources close to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman (MBS) are urging the US to attack Iran for an alleged drone strike that closed down a Saudi oil pipeline. The fact that Israel and Saudi Arabia have been working together behind the scenes has been known for some time, but today, neither state is making any real effort to hide it. Last year, MBS even said—unprecedented for a Saudi royal—that Israel has a right to its own land. In this episode, Armin and Ali try to unpack all of this. Is the US going to take on another war at the urging of two of its strongest allies? Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP102: The Somalian Ex-Muslims 🧕🏾 with Nun Benson

https://youtu.be/ISLeVPn2iwI

Watch the video version of this conversation  (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/28521

Nun Benson is a Somali ex-Muslim who has publicly shared her views on Islam's tolerance of slavery, the destructive influence of Islamic imperialism in Somalia, and the rampant anti-black racism within Muslim communities. She joined us to talk about the experience of leaving Islam in an increasingly radicalized Somali diaspora, her Sufi background, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the reform movement, Ilhan Omar, her upcoming podcast, WaaqNation, and more. Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

Israel & Saudi Arabia 🤝 Strange Bedfellows United Against Iran

 Start time: June 6th, around 7:30 pm PST
https://youtu.be/s7jHNNaVWzo
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently tweeted about an open meeting of "Arab countries sitting down together with Israel in order to advance the common interest of war with Iran." He later deleted the tweet, ending it with "combating Iran." Meanwhile, sources close to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman (MBS) are urging the US to attack Iran for an alleged drone strike that closed down a Saudi oil pipeline. The fact that Israel and Saudi Arabia have been working together behind the scenes has been known for some time, but neither state is now making any real effort to hide it. Last year, MBS even said—unprecedented for a Saudi royal—that Israel has a right to its own land. In this episode, Armin and Ali try to unpack all of this. Is the US soon going to take on another war at the urging of two of its strongest allies? Join in and ask your questions.
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Secular Jihadists

EP101: Leaving Ahmadiyya & Islam 🕋 with Reason on Faith


https://youtu.be/EvTiLQm_CbU

Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/25818 

Sohail Ahmad (@ReasonOnFaith) was raised in the minority Islamic sect of Ahmadiyyat, a community that is persecuted relentlessly by mainstream Muslims. Today, he has come out of the closet with an explosive, controversial video discussing at length why he has left Ahmadiyyat, why he has left Islam, and why, despite rejecting his faith, his compassion for the well-being and safety of his Ahmadi Muslim family and friends remains as intact as ever. If you are a Muslim, or an Ahmadi Muslim, with doubts and questions, this is a must-listen conversation.

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Secular Jihadists

EP100: The Birth of Islam 🕋 With Tom Holland


https://youtu.be/i2k7QhaR7Zs

Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/23975

 Tom Holland is a historian and author of the bestselling book, In the Shadow of the Sword, which charts the origins and early history of Islam based on recent scholarship. His documentary, Islam: The Untold Story, was both eye-opening and controversial, making Holland the target of numerous death threats. Another documentary, ISIS: The Origins of Violence, was acclaimed for exploring daring questions about the roots of ISIS's ideology of violence in Islamic scriptures. We talk about the latest on the historical records that give us clues to how Islam arose, in a riveting and eye-opening conversation. Check it out.
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Secular Jihadists

EP99: Is America a Christian Nation? ✝️ With Andrew Seidel


https://youtu.be/4-VWcxNkrxU

Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers) https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/24535

Andrew Seidel is a constitutional and civil rights attorney with the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), the largest advocacy group for atheists in the United States. His explosive first book, “The Founding Myth: Why Christian Nationalism is Un-American” (Sterling) is out now. Don't miss this amazing interview!
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Secular Jihadists

Sunni vs. Shia 🕋 Part 3: Current & Future Politics


https://youtu.be/3lHEbDQhpoA

Start time: May 15th, around 7:30 pm PST
In this three-part series, Armin and Ali go back to basics to discuss the two major sects of Islam: Sunni and Shia. What do these terms mean, how did these sects arise, what are their differences, and why have they been so ready to kill one another over them for thirteen centuries? In Part 1, we looked at the early history of each sect and how they came into existence. In Part 2, we discussed the differences in their beliefs and theology. In Part 3, we talk about where the conflict stands today and how it might look in the future. We will also take your questions live. Don’t miss this!
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Secular Jihadists

EP98: Sunni vs. Shia 🕋 Part 1: Early History

https://youtu.be/NyYGgJiQ9Es

This is the first of a 3-part series about the two largest Islamic sects, Sunnism and Shiism. In this episode, Armin and Ali go back to basics to discuss the alleged historical events that led to the development of these sects. We talk about what these terms mean, which Islamic figures they revere, the sources of their ideology, why have they been so ready to kill one another over for thirteen centuries, and more. We also answer your questions. Check it out.

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Secular Jihadists

EP97: Faith to Faithless 🕋🙅 with Aliyah Saleem

https://youtu.be/SihZDX50rxY

Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/22929 Aliyah Saleem is the co-founder of Faith to Faithless and co-editor of Leaving Faith Behind: The Journeys and Perspectives of People Who Have Chosen to Leave Islam. Aliyah comes from a Sunni background and spent about 6 years in formal Islamic boarding schools in Britain, Canada, and Pakistan, including Al-Huda Institute, where San Bernardino shooter Tashfeen Malik was also a student. At age 19, Aliyah decided to leave the faith completely. Aliyah is also a researcher at the House of Lords in Parliament. We did have some connection issues during this episode, but it is still as compelling as ever. Check it out.

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Secular Jihadists

EP96: Why I Left Islam with Fay Rahman 🧕🏼→👩🏽

https://youtu.be/qdwBgmC_CTA

Watch the video version of this conversation (for Subscribers): https://www.subscribestar.com/posts/22481

She was an ultra-conservative Salafi Muslim, a member of the Tableeghi Jamaat, and wore a niqab at age 11. Two years ago, she gave it all up. Today, she is a free woman who wants to normalize leaving Islam so that others like her don’t have to be thrown out of their homes or risk honour violence just for thinking differently. We speak to Fay Rahman about all of this and more and answer your questions. Check it out.

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Secular Jihadists

EP95: Going Undercover: with Counterterrorism Expert Mubin Shaikh 🕵️

https://youtu.be/RV5UbyEda2Y

He went undercover with jihadists to foil a potentially devastating Toronto terrorism plot. He counsels returning ISIS fighters. He fights Islamic terrorism. And as a Sufi Sunni Muslim, he has no regrets. Mubin Shaikh is a former security intelligence and counterterrorism operative who is a widely sought expert on radicalization, deradicalization, and national security. He advised the United Nations Security Council, the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, the National Counterterrorism Center, and Special Operations Command Central. He is an external expert with the Joint Staff SMA for CENTCOM Command Staff. And he joined us for a riveting conversation. Check it out.

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