The Blood of Lambs: A Former Terrorist's Memoir of Death and Redemption

( 19 )

Overview


Memoirs of a Terrorist
reveals the true inside story of the life and mindset of a radical muslim terrorist who finally came to renounce his murderous mission and embrace freedom.

Some radical Muslims believe that non-Muslims who refuse to convert must die. Memoirs of a Terrorist is the true account of the life of such a terrorist who has since renounced his deadly participation in jihad, or ?holy war.? His memoir conveys an urgent message to ...

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The Blood of Lambs: A Former Terrorist's Memoir of Death and Redemption

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Overview


Memoirs of a Terrorist
reveals the true inside story of the life and mindset of a radical muslim terrorist who finally came to renounce his murderous mission and embrace freedom.

Some radical Muslims believe that non-Muslims who refuse to convert must die. Memoirs of a Terrorist is the true account of the life of such a terrorist who has since renounced his deadly participation in jihad, or “holy war.” His memoir conveys an urgent message to Americans to wake up to the dangers of the terrorists who are still executing their harmful and destructive schemes.

Kamal Saleem was born under a different name into a Sunni Muslim family in Lebanon. From a young age he was taught that the loftiest accomplishment he could achieve in life was to be martyred while killing infidels, namely Christians, Jews, and Americans. At age seven, he was recruited by the Muslim Brotherhood and entered an assault camp where members of al-Assifa, the armed branch of Fatah, trained for terror missions against Israel. After years of training, Saleem operatedin successful terror campaigns funded by the Muslim Brotherhood, the Palestinian Liberation Organization, and wealthy oil sheikhs. He infiltrated the United States with the sole purpose of converting others to radical Islam.

However, a life-changing event caused him to reevaluate his worldview. Kamal came to know three kind Christian men, and through them he saw the love of God—eventually coming to know their God as well. As a result of their love andsacrificial giving, Kamal acknowledged his need for Christ as Savior. Memoirs of a Terrorist is his riveting story that attests to the power of love and freedom.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416577805
  • Publisher: Howard Books
  • Publication date: 4/7/2009
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 171,046
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author


Kamal Saleem
is now an American citizen. He has appeared on various news programs and has spoken at Stanford University, the University of California, and other institutions nationwide.

Lynn Vincent
is a features editor at World magazine and the collaborative writer of four books, including the New York Times bestselling and critically acclaimed memoir, Same Kind of Different as Me. She is a U.S. Navy veteran.

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Read an Excerpt

Beirut, Lebanon
1963
1

It was at my mother's kitchen table, surrounded by the smells of herbed olive oils and pomegranates, that I first learned of jihad. Every day, my brothers and I gathered around the low table for madrassa, our lessons in Islam. I always tried to sit facing east, toward the window above the long marble sink where a huge tree with sweet white berries brushed against the window panes. Made of a warm, reddish wood, our table sat in the middle of the kitchen and was surrounded by tesats, small rugs that kept us off the cool tile. Mother sat at the head of the table and read to us from the Koran and also from the hadith, which records the wisdom and instruction of Allah's prophet, Muhammad.

Mother's Koran had a hard black cover etched ornately in gold and scarlet. Her grandfather had given the Book to her father, who had given it her. Even as a small boy I knew my mother and father were devout Sunni Muslims. So devout, in fact, that other Sunnis held themselves a little straighter in our family's presence. My mother never went out without her hijab, only her coffee-colored eyes peering above the cloth that shielded her face, which no man outside our family had ever seen. My father, respected in our mosque, earned an honest living as a blacksmith. He had learned the trade from my grandfather, a slim Turk who wore a red fez, walked with a limp, and cherished thick, cinnamon-laced coffee.

Each day at madrassa, Mother pulled her treasured Koran from a soft bag made of ivory cloth and when she opened it, the breath of its frail, aging pages floated down the table. Mother would read to us about the glory of Islam, about the good Muslims, and about what the Jews did to us. As a four-year-old boy, my favorite parts were the stories of war.

I vividly remember the day in madrassa when we heard the story of a merciless bandit who went about robbing caravans and killing innocent travelers. "This bandit was an evil, evil man," Mother said, spinning the tale as she sketched pictures of swords for us to color.

An evil bandit? She had my attention.

"One day, there was a great battle between the Jews and the sons of Islam," she went on. "The bandit decided to join the fight for the cause of Allah. He charged in on a great, black horse, sweeping his heavy sword left and right, cutting down the infidel warriors."

My eyes grew wider. I held my breath so as not to miss a word.

"The bandit fought bravely for Allah, killing several of the enemy until the sword of an infidel pierced the bandit's heart. He tumbled from his horse and died on the battlefield."

Disappointment deflated my chest. What good is a story like that?

I could hear children outside, shouting and playing. A breeze from the Mediterranean shimmered in the berry tree. Mother's yaknah simmered on the stove — green beans snapped fresh, cooked with olive oil, tomato, onion, and garlic. She would serve it cool that evening with pita bread, fresh mint, and cucumbers. My stomach rumbled.

"After the bandit died," Mother was saying in her storytelling voice, "his mother had a dream. In this dream, she saw her son sitting on the shore of an endless crystal river, surrounded by a multitude of women who were feeding him and tending to him."

I turned back toward Mother. Maybe this story was not so bad after all.

"The bandit's mother was an observant woman, obedient to her husband and to Allah and Muhammad," my mother said. "This woman knew her son was a robber and a murderer. 'How dare you be sitting here in paradise?' she scolded him. 'You don't belong here. You belong in hell!' But her son answered, 'I died for the glory of Allah and when I woke up, He welcomed me into jannah.' "

Paradise.

My mother swept her eyes around the kitchen table. "So you see, my sons, even the most sinful man is able to redeem himself with one drop of an infidel's blood."

The Blood of Lambs © 2009 Arise Enterprises, LLC

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Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions

1) As a young boy at his mother's kitchen table, Kamal learned to embrace the teachings of radical Islam and hate infidels. Was there anything you learned in your childhood home that you later found to be untrue? How does knowing that some Islamists are taught their beliefs from childhood affect your view of them?

2) Throughout the book, Kamal tells of the infiltration of radical Islamists into the United States. How do these revelations affect your views of your own safety here? What, if anything, will you do differently in the light of these views?

3) When Kamal is beaten up three times on the way to work at his uncle's business, he takes refuge in a mosque. Later, the imams of the mosque take Kamal out into the ethnic neighborhoods to avenge him. How did you feel about these scenes? Were the imams delivering justice? Why or why not?

4) What did you learn about Muslim and Lebanese culture that surprised you?

5) Over the course of Kamal's childhood, financial pressures change his relationship with his father. How did you feel when Kamal's father pulled him from school and sent him to work at age 7? Are there any childhood family relationships that changed the trajectory of your life?

6) At his home, during madrassa (Muslim religious school), Kamal learned of various teachings from the Koran and hadith. Which of these teachings were new to you? Which most surprised you and why?

7) Prior to reading this book, were you aware of the number of domestic terrorist attacks thwarted by U.S. authorities since 9/11? If not, what about these plots most surprised you? Were you aware of the number of homegrown jihadists operating in the U.S., as opposed to those who have immigrated from other countries? How does that affect your view of the threat of jihadist terrorism on U.S. soil?

8) How did you feel when you read the scene in which Kamal's unit of child soldiers comes under rocket attack in the Golan Heights? How did you feel when his young friend Mohammed was killed? What have you learned from this book about jihadists' use of child soldiers?

9) In the Fatah/PLO terror camp at Sabra, Kamal was mentored by a radical named Abu Yousef. How do you think Kamal's life might have been different if Abu Yousef had not mentored him? Would Kamal be alive today? What does Abu Yousef's mentorship tell us about the power of male role modeling in the life of a child?

10) During the story, Kamal is tracked to his hometown and also threatened via email by a group of radical Pakistanis. Were you aware that this type of activity is taking place in the U.S.? What are your thoughts on that?

11) What new understanding have you gained from this book about the roots and nature of the Palestinian/Israeli conflict? How has this book affected your view of whether peace is possible in this conflict?

12) During the story, Kamal travels to Libya to train terrorists from around the world in desert camps sponsored by the dictator Moammar Ghaddafi. Were you aware that such camps existed and still exist today? What are your thoughts on the existence of these "universities of terrorism?" How does it affect your thinking about Islamism to know that camps exist only to train people to kill Jews and Americans?

13) Kamal's story reveals the link between Saudi Arabian money and Islamist terrorism. How has the book affected your view of our staunch U.S. ally?

14) We learn from Kamal's story that "honor killing" is now taking place in the United States. Why do you think the U.S. media has placed so little emphasis on covering these crimes?

15) Were you surprised to learn that the man who made a jihadist threat to Kamal after he spoke at the U.S. Air Force Academy was released back into American streets? How does that affect your view of the First Amendment and whether jihadists are using American liberties against this country?

16) Clearly, Kamal Saleem has killed people and is now telling his story. Do you believe a man can repent of such a life and go on to do good in the world?

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 19 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 19 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Gripping Read

    "The Blood of Lambs" byy Kamal Saleem is an amazing, must read book from start to finish. It is a memoir about a former terrorist's life. Since it is a memoir, everything contained in the book must be taken with a grain of salt because the author will be inherantly somewhat biased. However, that being said, I believe the author does try to provide the reader with an honest view of what being a terrorist was like. The purpose of this book is to inform the reader and open up their eyes that the danger to America is not gone but in fact real and present.

    The chapters in this book are short, exactly like "The DaVinci Code", which makes the book an even faster read. I could not put this book down once I began it. It grabs the reader immediately and they are drawn into this dangerous world. Since the purpose of this book was not just to tell the story of one former terrorist's life but to inform and warn the readers, it succeeded. The reader cannot finish this book without feeling a little chill in their spine about the future. This book definitely provides a wakeup call for all of those who have become complacent since the 9/11 terrorist attacks in America.

    This is an amazing memoir and I highly recommend it to everyone. It is one of those books you can't put down once you begin. Also this book has a good point it's trying to make which makes this book even more worth the read.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The Blood of Lambs, by Kamal Saleem

    This is truly the best book I have ever read. Kamal's story gripped me from the very beginning and I simply could not stop reading the book once I started. I had alot of my own personal questions regarding Islam and Muslims before I started reading it and Kamal answered alot of these questions that actually brought me a peace of mind, but at the same time validated my fears regarding our war on terrorism. I believe considering the times we live in, every person should read this book if for no other reason but to have a better understanding. I wish I could thank him personally for having the courage to write about it.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Lost some serious sleep over this one!

    I literally was not able to put this book down until I had finished it. It is fascinating and enlightening. I like the way the author includes passages from the Qu'ran. For an American, with absolutely no understanding of Muslim culture, this book is a wake-up call!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2009

    Nothing new

    As a security professional, the "inside" story concept revealed nothing new. To the "non-security" minded, it is enlightening to discover the conviction these religous groups have to infiltrate and spread their message.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2009

    Excellent book that should cause all to reevaluate their view of the threats that western/christian/jewish traditions face in the coming decades.

    A personal story of a devout muslem and his journey from being a terrorist devoted to killing in the name of Allah to a man of peace. A true story unadorned by rabid pro-western bias. The book provides a keen insight and perspective in to the inner thinking/workings of some muslem families and some muslem organizations. Well worth the read, but it will likely cause the casual student of international affairs to think and perhaps reevaluate his/her opinions.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2009

    WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!

    I heard Mr. Saleem in a radio interview after missing him speak at my church. This book is so very well written and the message is clear. Buy it! Read it! Pass it on!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2009

    Love can prevail

    This man's life story is about sin and redemption. It shows how love is needed to complete your heart - love by the people here on Earth but that the love of God is needed most of all. It is inspiring that the people who think like this can be changed by understanding what Jesus truly did and continues to do. It was hard to read in some places for the violence but is necessary in the book to make us understand what jihad is about. I would not say this is a Christian read for those interested in the life of a terrorist, that is just what I took from it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2009

    Riveting Read

    Kamal's tale of growing up in the middle east and how he became involved with terrorist factions is hard to put down. The formula he describes for assimilation into the US culture is truly a must read. People need to be aware of what is going on around them and the frightening possibilities that are outlined in this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 25, 2012

    Insightful and thought-provoking read!

    After hearing a former Muslim pastor speak at my church, I became interested in trying to find out more on how some extremist Muslims come to hate Amercians/Christians and how one might make the journey from this viewpoint to becoming a Christian themselves. So when my Christian book club was looking for a biography to read, I found this memoir online.
    The memoir was easy to read switching back and forth between memories and past experiences of the author as he became more and more involved with Muslim terrorism and between current times when he has converted to Christianity and is living in America speaking about his experiences and how if affects America.
    I did get insight that I did not have before on the kind of teachings and viewpoints that are indoctrinated in the Muslim culture from an early age. And how easy it is to get involved in terrorism from an early age. The author was only 7 when he was participating in his first mission. I could have done without as much detail on the earlier missions and attacks as I was more interested in the personal aspect of the author's feelings/viewpoints and how they were changing. I would have liked to see more on that line pertaning to the religious aspect and to his relationship with his wife who did not even know about his past until well into their marriage.
    But it was very interesting. Of course, the part referencing 9/11 was espceially poignant. And the description of how he is in constant danger even now from other extremmist Muslims when speaking on terrorism shows that this issue has not gone away. America should not be paranoid but we cannot afford to let our guard down too much either. Let's not have history repeat itself witn another 9/11. Good read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    Highly recommend

    I think every American should read this book & I would be happy to lend it to anyone with a Nook. It explains so much about why radical Muslims hate anyone that is not a Muslim and why there is nothing we can do to change the way they think except pray that they will find the light of Christianity before they take over our world.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2009

    very interesting and for us scary

    This book sheds light on some very bad things going on in the US. We need to be aware and not listen to the down play of the Media and our leaders. It is real, and this man had a horrible child hood and brain washing. Praise the Lord he is not out there still, plotting and killing.

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  • Posted June 14, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Eye Opener

    This was a truly inspirational conversion story.

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    Posted May 12, 2010

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    Posted October 4, 2010

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    Posted April 4, 2012

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    Posted November 26, 2010

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    Posted March 3, 2014

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    Posted April 21, 2009

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