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Robert "Musa" Cerantonio is a former ISIS propagandist who has been called perhaps "the most famous jihadist in Australia". Cerantonio converted to Islam in 2002, he became an Islamic preacher a few years later, then a supporter of the restoration of the caliphate, and of the Islamic State. He has been arrested and deported once, and is currently serving a prison sentence for trying to travel by boat from Australia to ISIS territory in the southern Philippines due for release in May 2023.
Quotes about Cerantonio
- In the article at The Atlantic, Graeme Wood wrote, “In block letters—the Arabic transcriptions neatly bedecked with diacritical marks, all in the right places—he explained his journey back from jihad.” Cerantonio stated in the letter that for the previous 17 years, he was completely wrong. “Seeing individuals dedicate themselves to tyrannical death cults led by suicidal maniacs is bad enough. Knowing that I may have contributed to their choices is terrible,” he wrote.
- While in jail, Cerantonio began to read the Quran more thoroughly, focusing on the passages that perplexed him the most. Among these was the person known as Dhu-l Qarnayn, or “the two-horned one,” who appears in the 18th chapter of the Quran and is sometimes misidentified as Alexander the Great. Cerantonio discovered no connection between Dhu-l Qarnayn and the actual Alexander, but he did detect connections between Dhu-l Qarnayn and an Aramaic version of Alexander’s tale that was substantially fabricated. He assumed that the Aramaic version had replicated the Quran, but after getting a copy and deciphering it for himself, he came to the conclusion that the contrary was more plausible.
- Cerantonio went on and added, “Realizing that Dhu-l Qarnayn was not at all a real person but was rather based on a fictional account of Alexander the Great instantly left me with only one possible conclusion: The Quran was not divinely inspired.”
- “Of course, I would have preferred to have discovered all that 17 years ago and avoided much trouble,” he added. Cerantonio has so ditched not only ISIS but also Islam and religion in general.
- Concerning author Richard Dawkins, whom he follows since becoming athiest, Cerantonio noted that he disagrees with what Dawkins says since he gets things incorrect when writing about Islam. “Dawkins quotes a scripture that claims martyrs will be given 72 virgins in paradise. That hadith is not authentic!” Cerantonio voiced his displeasure in a Skype session with Wood. He claimed that opponents of ISIS, even intellectual ones, become ignorant when fighting jihadism and mistakenly believe that the jihadists themselves are stupid.
- as quoted from