The latest version of a video game known as PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) has become the focus of controversy after Muslims have grown enraged and complained about how it supposedly encourages “idol worship.” And true to form for practically the entire world these days, when faced with this rage, the game developers caved and revised the game. Everyone has decided that the best thing to do in the face of intimidation from Muslims is give them everything they want, and so that’s what happened in this case.
OpIndia reported Wednesday that “the controversy erupted after PUBG released a new feature titled ‘Mysterious Jungle’, which triggered a backlash in Islamic societies for allegedly pushing forms ‘idol worshipping.’” It seems that “the online game PUBG Mobile had released a latest ‘Mysterious Jungle’ mode and it is reported to be exclusive to the ‘Sanhok’ map. The reason for the outrage was due to a feature present in the new update where players can pray in front of a totem in order to restore their health.”
Muslims reacted predictably. They did not dismiss this as “only a game” or alternatively, issue warnings to Muslim parents that the game contained un-Islamic elements and should not be purchased. Instead, “many Muslim players took it as an insult to their religion as idol worship is prohibited in Islam. The took to Twitter to slam the creators of PUBG for promoting idol worshipping and asked fellow Muslims to uninstall PUBG. Another user asked Muslims to uninstall PUBG, if he was a true Muslim.”
This rage was based on the idea that the game involved dangerous temptations for Muslim children: “a number of preachers from the Middle East had also warned against the recently released PUBG update, in which players appear worshipping idols. The preachers had demanded authorities to act swiftly to save children from these concepts.” Dr. Bassam Al Shatti, Professor of faith at the College of Sharia, Kuwait University, said that PUBG had “violated Islamic beliefs regarding prostration and bowing to idols, and this is the greatest sin in Islam because prostrating and bowing is worship and glorification solely and exclusively to Almighty Allah.”
Al Shatti explained that children who played the game could become “addicted” to polytheism: “The special draw of gaming that makes it the preferred pastime of so many millions of kids and adults is not just entertainment, it is dangerous because it teaches them polytheism, so they prefer it and become addicted to it.”
Another Muslim academic, Dr. Rashid Al Alimi, Professor at the College of Basic Education, “added that these games are dangerous for Muslims since they can create generations who do not know Tawhid or the defining doctrine of Islam, which declares absolute monotheism – the unity and uniqueness of Almighty Allah as the creator and sustainer of the universe.”
And Dr. Aref Bin Mazyad Al Suhaimi, Professor of Faith in the College of Da’wah and Fundamentals of Religion at the Islamic University in Saudi Arabia, added: “Islam promotes tolerance, balance, equality, consensus, reformism, and all things that take the middle path to materialise the best interest of people. So Sharia permits games that have a preponderant interest, such as shooting, racing, swimming, horse riding, etc.” But not, needless to say, idolatry.
Uninstalling the game and calling upon Muslims to avoid it was one thing, but in this case the Muslim rage mob succeeded in getting the game revised for everyone. Now the supposed temptation to idol worship has been removed for all the players, not just Muslms. Players who might actually have liked that feature are out of luck; they can’t muster a rage mob nearly as large or as threatening as those who hated the feature could.
And so once again the principle is reinforced: when Muslims (or Leftists, as we are seeing everywhere lately) are enraged about something, give them what they want. The whole world seems to have decided that the proper response to intimidation with the implication of violence behind it is to give in. This will only encourage more intimidation, but no one seems to mind. The same thing happened after the jihad attack at the Muhammad art exhibit and cartoon contest that Pamela Geller and I hosted in 2015: all the intelligentsia, the renowned TV talking heads, rounded upon Pamela Geller and rebuked her for exercising the freedom of speech, when everyone knows that the proper response to Muslim threats is to kowtow.
Everyone knows that. Everyone does it. The problem, there keep on being more demands. And now those who do the demanding know this tactic works. Will all this end anywhere short of the full adoption of Sharia in the West? Only if someone in power decides that there will be no more surrender, no more capitulation, to Muslim and Leftist demands. We’re still waiting for that person.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 19 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Palestinian Delusion: The Catastrophic History of the Middle East Peace Process. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.
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