Topic started by cat (@ curtin-gw.zapsurf.com.sg) on Tue Feb 3 07:18:57 EST 2004.
All times in EST +10:30 for IST.
250 pilgrims were crushed to death in a hajj stampede last Sunday and a similar number were injured during the annual stoning of Satan ritual. This ritual dates back to pre-Islamic era characterized by Muhammad as Jaheliyah (The Age Ignorance). Despite that it was incorporated in Islam and is practiced by Muslims up to this day.
Hajj Minister Iyad Madani said. "All precautions were taken to prevent such an incident, but this is God's will. Caution isn't stronger than fate," Madani said.
Last year, 14 pilgrims were trampled to death during the ritual and 35 died in a 2001 stampede. In 1998, 180 pilgrims died.
It seems that each year the appetite of Allah for blood keeps increasing.
Traditionally Muslims are required to sacrifice (qurbani) animals during the hajj and spill blood of sheep or camel by slitting their throats to please Allah. However, as we can witness and the Hajj Minister Madani has testified, Allah’s will now also include human qurbani. According the Muhammad Allah has everything under his control and nothing happens without his will. Therefore as the Minister Madani has pointed out, it is Allah who is taking lives of the pilgrims overriding all precautions. Has Allah developed a taste for Muslim blood as well.
We always knew that ”instilling terror into the hearts of the unbelievers and smiting above their neck and finger-tips” pleased Allah 8:12, That he would accompany Muslim warriors to slay the unbelievers. 8:17, He would encourage his prophet to rouse the believers to fight and would promise them victory over the nonbelievers ten times their number 8:65, Nevertheless, as of the late, his fighters are on the run and the enemies are winning. May be it is because of this that Allah is taking the lives of the Muslims and slaying them instead when they go to worship him.
Anyway, there was also something good in this year’s hajj. Sheik Abdul Aziz al-Sheik, Saudi Arabia's top cleric, addressed 2 million Muslim pilgrims and denounced the Islamic terrorists, calling them an affront to Islam.
Sheik Abdul Aziz al-Sheik said there were those who claim to be holy warriors, but were shedding Muslim blood and destabilizing the nation.
"Is it holy war to shed Muslim blood? Is it holy war to shed the blood of non-Muslims given sanctuary in Muslim lands? Is it holy war to destroy the possession of Muslims,"
Some commentators thought this is a great step forward. A Muslim cleric is calling the terrorist an affront to Islam! This is much different from what we are used to hear from the Mullahs in Iran or even in London. Or is it? Pay attention, the good Sheikh is condemning the terrorists for shedding the blood of Muslims and those who have been given sanctuary in Muslim land. He is not condemning the killing of non-Muslims in kafir land.
Now let us not be too technical. I am pretty sure Sheikh Abul Aziz is against terrorism everywhere. However, why he is not saying killing the non-Muslims in non-Islamic countries is just as evil as killing the Muslims? Why Sheikh talks about Muslims and non-Muslims? Isn’t every life precious? Is there any difference between Muslim life and Muslim possession and the lives and possessions of non-Muslims?
The fact is that, Sheikh Abul Aziz al Sheikh cannot say the lives of the infidels living in non-Islamic lands are worth the same as the lives of the Muslims, not because he does not want to say it but because he can’t. He can’t because that would go against the Quran and what Muhammad said. Muhammad divided the world in two camps: Dar al Harb (House of war) and Dar al Islam (House of Islam). The land of the unbelievers is Dar Al Harb. Muslims are required to wage war in Dar al Harb whenever they have the means and the power to do so and claim it as House of Islam. During the last few centuries, Muslims have been weak and unable to wage war against the West. When they are weak they are supposed to make peace treaties and remain patient until Allah gives them the strength and the opportunity. So Sheikh Abul Aziz al Sheikh could not say it is wrong to kill another human being or destroy his possessions. He would have been saying something contrary to the Quran. That is why he emphasized that it is wrong to kill Muslims or non-Muslims who have been given protection in Islamic land.
Non-Muslims who have been given protection in Islamic land fall under the category of dhimmi. Dhimmi is a Jew or a Christian who is allowed to live in a land ruled by Islam, provided he pays Jizzyah with “willing submission and feel subdued”. 9:29 Due to Western influence and fearing their anger, which would mean economical sanctions, hardly any Islamic country practices this law today.
The Sheik reminded the millions of Muslims who followed his televised speech in many Islamic countries the last sermon of the Prophet: "every Muslim is a Muslim's brother, and the Muslims are brethren. Fighting between them should be avoided." Note that this brotherhood does not extend to human race but only to Muslims. As far as others, the Quran says "Verily, the Mushrikûn (unbeleivers) are Najasun (impure) 9:28. And "against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power,... to strike terror into their hearts". 8:60
Sheikh Abul Aziz al Sheikh also defended the Wahhabism, the streak of Islam with a strict interpretation of Sharia (Islamic law) that is applied in Saudi Arabia and is being blamed by Bush for the rise of Islamic fundamentalism worldwide: "This country is based on this religion and will remain steadfast on it." Said the Sheikh.
Just so that there be no false expectations for those who think this is a turning point for the Muslims and they are going to open up to the West in spirit of amity and love, calling America "the greatest Satan," some pilgrims threw pebbles at one pillar where someone scrawled "USA."
So what was that speech all about? The speech was an admonition of the terrorists who have targeted Saudi Arabia and other Islamic countries in their zest to kill the non-Muslims and their alleged collaborators. In this speech Sheikh Abul Aziz al Sheikh was not asking the Muslim terrorists to stop their attacks against America or non-Muslim civilians living in western countries. He was angry because Muslim holy warriors had gone too far and bombed buildings in Saudi Arabia and other Islamic countries.
The fact is that not this Sheikh nor anyone else can change what Allah has ordained in the Quran. To call Muslims to abandon altogether the fight against the unbelievers, goes against the philosophy of Islam and is deemed to be heresy. No Muslim cleric or politician would dare to say such thing. This would leave Islam with no purpose and raison d’etre. The goal of Islam is to conquer the world not to become just another religion in the pantheon of many religions. The means to do that is through Jihad. Jihad is one of the five pillars of Islam. No one can question or oppose it.
However, although Jihad cannot be discarded altogether, it can be postponed until a propitious time.
For example in October 2003 the "moderate" Malaysian Prime Minister, Dr. Mahathir, addressed all the Muslims and their holy warriors and in a passionate speech televised across the Islamic world urged them to "postpone" their Jihad until, in his words, "Ummah can produce its own weapons and not rely on its detractors and enemies for what it needs most”. That can happen only, said the Prime Minister, when Muslims have a sizeable arsenal of “guns and rockets, bombs and warplanes, tanks and warships” and only then, they should strike