Leading Muslim Scholar Speaks to the Foreign Service Retirees Association

On May 15, 2015, Dr. Parvez Ahmed, Professor of Finance at the University of North Florida, a member of the Jacksonville Human Rights Commission and a Fulbright Scholar, spoke on the topic: “Terror in the Name of Islam  - Unholy War Not Jihad.”  He spoke before the membership of the Foreign Service Retirees Association of Florida.  Dr. Ahmed spoke quite eloquently about terror and its history from antiquity.  With his research of economy and terror down through the ages, he was able to demonstrate that the current terror in the Middle East is neither religious nor based on the teachings of Islam.  His research has also shown that since 9/11, and following the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq, terror has spiked worldwide.  Currently, 90% of the worldwide victims of terror are Muslims.   The biggest threat today is ISIS, which is waging war in the name of Islam while the Quran teaches non-violence and the preservation of life.  Dr. Ahmed concluded his scholarly and fascinating talk with the recommendation that only a socio-political framework will solve the problems since there is no military solution.  Many questions were fielded from the audience and Dr. Ahmed expressed an interest in speaking before other groups if requested.  He plans to take a second group of tourists to Turkey in May of 2016.  He noted that Turkey’s current government is interesting since it is in the process of undoing many of the previous reforms of Ataturk.