Have any atheists actually read the Quran before debating with Muslims?

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I haven't read the Koran in its entirety, but I researched it when I was writing the Tyranny of God. I read about how it is structured and the main verses and its claims. 

However with regards to this question, it seems to suggest that Atheists should read the Koran first before debating Muslims. 

I have 2 responses to this :

1. Why should they when many, if not most, Muslims have not read the Koran themselves. 

If Muslims read the Koran themselves, not with a cleric hindering their own understanding, there will be no need debating the truthfulness of their religious claims. 

This belief that the Koran is best understood in Arabic only, is a similar trick to what the Catholics did in medieval times, when they only had the Bible in Latin to keep people ignorant and keep people dependent on their clergy. In this way, they maintained this fantasy that their Holy Book is the ultimate book. But as people understood it and studied it, many saw that it did not make sense and it is not right to hold these as books of truth written by almighty beings. 

The same will be true with the Koran. As more Muslims seek to really understand it, without the indoctrinating influence of clerics and groups, more of them will match what the Koran says with their common sense and reasoning and realise that many of its claims cannot be true. 

2. Do we really need to debate whether Santa Claus is true if we have not read his fairy tale story? We don't need to because we have enough background information and knowledge to know that it isn't true. We are certain that Santa Clause is a small part of literature.

Similarly with our knowledge of our 13 billion year history so far, the Bible and the Koran are mere trivia of how a small number of individuals belonging to a small branch of mammalian species, that exist in a tiny planet, try to understand and explain their existence with made up stories of almighty beings that think, behave and react like themselves.

Do you have a different answer that might help the questioner? How would you answer this question?


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