I just wanted to take issue with one of the assertions in the article that "the Qu'ran does call for the extermination of infidels," because this isn't true. The author claims that the Qur'an only says to kill a certain group of idol-worshippers but even that's not the case.
All of the verses that people use to supposedly prove that the Qur'an says to kill all disbelievers are in a particularly important context that always gets left out, and it makes me so angry. In all of those sections there are specific references to the people targeted by those commands as being people who "oppressed", "persecuted", "broke their oaths", "tried to kill the Messenger" and so forth. In other words, the commands relate to very specific people who were doing bad things, it's not just a blanket statement.
I have a whole set of these verses with the relevant sections in boldface print that my husband and I made up for a class he teaches at the university but I think it might be too long to post here. Nonetheless, when we show these verses in their proper contexts to people, his students still write papers and answer test questions with garbage such as "Islam says to kill all disbelievers"
: I guess some people just want to believe whatever they want to believe no matter what evidence they are presented with.
This article seems to be trying to say essentially "yeah, the Qur'an has blanket death statements against innocent people but the Bible does too, so what difference does it make?" and I wholeheartedly disagree with and abhor this viewpoint. The evidence is clear that the Prophet Mohammad peace be upon him wasn't the last prophet for nothing-- we believe that what he brought was not just a repeat of old ignorance but a rise above it. Defending yourself against people who are actively harming you is one thing, blanket killing people because they're guilty by association is entirely another. The Qur'an commands the former, not the latter.
Below I've linked to an excellent article about the defining characteristic of Islam, which is "mercy". I plan on getting this up on both my blog and my website soon. Note that it's a PDF document. It's an EXCELLENT article and should give people insight into the most fundamental bases of Islam and an excellent yardstick with which to judge assertions made about Islam whether by Muslims or non-Muslims.
Mercy: The Stamp of Creationhttp://www.nawawi.org/downloads/article1.pdf