A prominent conservative Muslim commentator has caused controversy after praising the arrest of an atheist YouTuber in Egypt named Sherif Gaber. Gaber has gained a following making videos critical of Islam in Arabic and posting them online. His activities have drawn the ire of the Egyptian state.
On March 31, the Salafi Al-Nour party filed a criminal complaint against him for blasphemy. There is now a warrant out for his arrest.
When Gaber tweeted the news of his impending arrest, American commentator Daniel Haqiqatjou tweeted “Finally.”
This prompted a Twitter spat between the two of them.
Haqiqatjou seemingly had no compassion for the fact he was endorsing Gaber potentially facing years in prison merely for expressing his opinions. Nevermind that Gaber has previously been arrested in 2013 and served a year of hard labor for supporting gay rights in front of his professor in his university.
When it was pointed out to Haqiqatjou that if the West operated on the same principles, Haqiqatjou would be dead, he responded by doubling down.
So who is Daniel Haqiqatjou? He was born in Houston, Texas and attended Harvard University where he studied physics and philosophy and converted to Islam. He completed a Masters degree in philosophy from Tufts University and is currently listed as a professor of Western philosophy at American Open University, which was established in 1995 and offers Islamic Studies classes online.
Haqiqatjou (whose name means truth seeker) writes and lectures on contemporary issues surrounding Muslims and (against) modernity. His bio says he has spoken at universities and mosques around the world and his work has been featured in outlets such as The Washington Post, The Atlantic, CNN, Aljazeera, Public Discourse, Mashable, and First Things.
Daniel Haqiqatjou runs a website called “The Muslim Skeptic,” where he holds forth on issues relating to Islam and Modernity. To get an idea of where he stands, you only need to read his pinned tweet:
He has previously endorsed the death penalty for homosexuality and atheism, along with other hardline positions like the authority of men over their wives.
To see Haqiqatjou’s position’s in full, watch this incredible interview of him on The Amazing Atheist: