“As a bookseller, we provide our customers with access to a variety of viewpoints,” Amazon claimed in response to complaints.
By United with Israel Staff
The online retail giant Amazon is selling books that promote extremism according to a report in the UK’s Express newspaper. Egypt’s Al-Azhar Observatory for Combating Terrorism also filed a complain regarding the matter.
Several of these books were outlawed by British prison officials since 2015 due to concerns that they are used to recruit inmates to Islamic extremism, violence, racism and hate.
“Publishing content that promotes extremism and terrorism under the pretext of the freedom of opinion and expression is unreasonable,” the Observatory said, according to Ahram Online. Egypt’s top Islamic institution added that “hardliners and extremist groups search for any room to sneak into young people’s minds.”
The Henry Jackson Society think tank found on Amazon prohibited titles such as “Milestones,” by Sayyid Qutb, a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt in the 50’s and 60’s. This book blames Jews for “materialism, animal sexuality, the destruction of the family and the dissolution of society.” It received a rating of 4-5 stars on Amazon by 71 percent of those who read it.
An Amazon book reviewer, T. Graczewski, who gave the book 5 stars claims that this book is the “most influential and historically far-reaching Islamic text written in the past century,” maintaining that Qutb’s work “created the philosophical foundation upon which Al Qaeda and other Islamic extremist groups have been built.”
“For anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of what motivates relatively well-educated, affluent and presumably sane young men to fly passenger jets into skyscrapers there is no better place to begin than here,” Graczewski added.
Other books banned by prisons that are available on Amazon include “The Fundamentals of Tawheed,” by Canadian Salafi Muslim preacher Abu Ameenah Bilal Phillips, and “Towards Understanding Islam,” by Syed Abul Ala Maududi.
“Although we ban extremists from the UK, their books can still get through, and in this case be sold by a global corporation that considers itself to have positive corporate values,” Dr. Paul Stott, of the Henry Jackson Society, said, according to The Express.
Other critics of the bookscontacted Amazon asking that the offending literature be removed and demanding that more be done to supervise what is for sale on the platform.
Amazon answered the concerns by saying, “As a bookseller, we provide our customers with access to a variety of viewpoints, including books that some customers may find objectionable,” according to Express. “We reserve the right not to sell certain content, such as pornography or other inappropriate content,” Amazon added.
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