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Vol.13 Issue No.162

Monthly Newspaper

March 2010 Rabi Al-Awwal/Rabi Al-Akhar 1431H

Marwan Ahmad

U.S. these refugee programs have been affected too which resulted in tougher times for the refugee arrivals. Refugees normally receive a fixed amount of money given to the resettlement agencies which is used to furnish their apartments and supply them with food. Basically, they provide them with basic necessities to start their new life in their new home country the United States for the first thirty days. After the initial period the agencies register the refugee in various State programs created especially for them to help them adapt and adjust to their new life. These services include Food Stamps, bus passes, and full health coverage for eight months through AHCCCS as well as trying to finding them suitable jobs based on their qualifications. In addition, some refugees receive what is known as a Match Grant that extends the types and the lengths of services they will receive, but not all receive this extended service. Refugee agencies also receive donations from local Churches, charities and individuals in the form of cash or items such as household items.

Muslim Voice Refugees from Muslim countries have been brought to the United States for many years. They come from different parts of the world especially those that have political and economical turmoil as well as from war zones. Since the 1990s an influx of refugees started coming from Somalia, Sudan, Bosnia and Iraq in the thousands. These refugees are sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under what is know as Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) which in turn distributes them to many refugee resettlement agencies around the nation.

Are Muslims doing enough to help refugees?

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The main agencies that resettle refugees in Arizona are The International Rescue Committee (IRC), Catholic Social Services and Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest among other smaller agencies. These agencies are overlooked by the Department of Economic Security, Arizona Refugee Resettlement program led currently by State Coordinator Charles Shipman.

Last year, each refugee received $450 from the Federal Government to help the agencies resettle them.

Since the economic decent in the

What Avatar means to Muslims



Pop Culture of Hijab

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As of January 2010 this allowance was doubled to $900 per refugee after many complaints by agencies and refugees of the dire need of the refugees who arrive to the U.S. Even though this will help agencies and refugees in their resettlement efforts there are still many challenges that face both the agencies and the refugees. Refugees say that the problem is more than just money and material things there is a sense of negligence by these agencies. This feeling of negligence varies from one agency to another. We found out that there are more complaints by refugees when it came to the IRC and Lutheran Social Services compared to the Catholic Social Services. We attempted to reach the three main refugee agencies in Arizona as well as the State Refugee resettlement office but only Robin Dunn-Marcos from IRC returned our call. “We have a grievance process that refugees can fill out in our lobby” Robin said. “They can also write me a letter if they choose to even in their native language and I will follow up on it” she added. When asked about the type of services refugees are entitled to Robin said that there are so many

Continued on page 2

Black America’s Path to Islam


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Refugees Resettlement Programs in Arizona



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MARCH 2010


TERMS USED IN THIS PAPER Alhamdulilah: Praise God Allah: Arabic word for God Fatwa: Islamic decision based on Shari’a Hadith: Sayings of the Prophet Mohammad Hajj: Pilgrimage to Mecca Halal: Allowed in Islam Halaqa: Group study Haram: Prohibited in Islam Hijab: Head cover for women Hijra: Migration of the Prophet from Mecca to Madina Imam: Islamic scholar Iman: Faith Inshallah: God willing Madina: City near Mecca in Saudia Arabia Masjid: Place were Muslims gather for prayer and studies Mecca: City in Saudi Arabia where Prophet Mohammad was born Pbuh: Peace be upon him Quran: Islam’s Holy book Shahadah: Is saying “I accept Allah as the one God and Mohammad as his messenger” when someone accepts Islam. Sharia’: Islamic law Shura: A council of Muslim scholars (SWT) Subhanahu Watala: Praise be to Allah Taqwa: God consciousness

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Deadlines for submission of letters is the 20th of every month, and for advertisements by the 25th. Only letters and articles submitted on disk or email will be accepted for review. The Publisher reserves the right to refuse any letters, articles or advertisement or any other material. The Publisher will not be liable for more than the advertisement cost in case of an error. The Muslim Voice is not responsible for the contents of advertisements or articles nor endorses them in any way or form.

Breek Publishing launches Mosaic Media Network in the U.S. Muslim Voice

Breek Publishing and Marketing, the publisher of several community publications including Muslim Voice, Arab Voice and the Multicultural Yellow Pages for the past seventeen years in Arizona has launched a new national project to link between Muslim and Arab owned media outlets in the U.S. called Mosaic Media Network. Mosaic Media Network will bring in the many years of working in media in the United States and a collection of knowledge, experience and direct relations with other media outlets in the U.S. that are run by Muslims or Middle Easterners entrepreneurs. “I have been building relations with media outlets for the past seventeen years. We exchange ideas and collaborate together, it’s time to put all of this in formal context to benefit all Muslim

and Arab media in the U.S.” said Marwan Ahmad, founder of Mosaic Media Network. “Collaboration and networking means power. We can now share news, ideas, expertise, and advertising” This is the first time group of media outlets from all over the United States come together to form such allies” Ahmad said. The group is gaining momentum by more media outlets joining Mosaic Media Network. The network is collecting detailed information about its media members to generate comprehensive information about these media outlets. This will help government and private institutions and companies who are interested in working with Muslim and Arab media in the U.S. Mosaic Media Network also has a freelancers section to its network. Writers, editors, photographers, and video producers can join the network to showcase and promote their

work to media outlets. “Freelancers can join the MMN and showcase their work to be syndicated by MMN within the network and outside as well” Ahmad explained. MMN founder Marwan Ahmad thinks in a few months most of the U.S. based media outlets will be registered under MMN and take advantage of its free services. The goal is to strengthen its members and ensure their success and continuity. “We will be able to produce and send out media releases and news to hundreds of media outlets that will reproduce this news as well to their readers, listeners or viewers in one shot” Marwan added. “We will be able to sell and share advertisements by large corporations, who normally do not pay attention to small community based media outlets”, he added. MMN relies on numbers and in number is power this is what MMN builds on.

Refugees Resettlement Programs in Arizona Continued From page 1 programs and services it’s hard to list them all and she invited us to visit the IRC office to give us a tour and explain how it works in the future. “Refugees have a preconceived idea of America before they come” Robin said and because of this preconceived idea they expect a lot. She added that she is frustrated as well, yet funds are limited which in turn means less services to help refugees and less money to get them things they need. We took our complaints to the top and we are happy they increased the refugee allowance from $450 to $900. “Only half of the refugees get the Match Grant funding and its given by priority cases only”. The IRC provides additional programs to refugees such as mental health, survivals of torture, Home ownership and Micro Business programs. When asked about complains by refugees she said “Sometimes what is said is not accurate”. On the refugee side it seems the picture is totally different. Even though, the vast majority of refugees are grateful for the chance to start a new life in the States there is a general feeling of resentment. They say that they don’t get appropriate treatment by caseworkers at the agencies. The caseworkers prefer to spend time at their desks rather than visit them and check on them. Even phone calls are not answered by their caseworkers. Their complaints are addressed by some agencies. Some went as far as protesting in the streets against lack of support and work. “Why do they bring us here if there are no jobs for us” S.A. one of the Iraqi refugees said. “I had a doctor visit and even though I don’t speak English my caseworker or translator did not show up to my doctor’s office to translate for me” W. M. said. In one case a lady who had to go through surgery preparation was not provided a translator by her agency so she can communicate with her doctor. Community members who have been in the States longer end up helping these refugees in some cases. “I tried to call the caseworker

from Lutheran Social Services repeatedly to ask for assistance for the refugee but no luck” Hanan A. a community member said. Another community member attempted to contact the Lutheran Social Services but he was not successful in reaching anyone but an answering machine. In one case a State worker asked a refugee to spend sixteen hours a week looking for a job and if he doesn’t he will lose his financial support. The refugee who is eager to find a job but doesn’t speak English went to many places looking for a job but could not even communicate his need for a job nevertheless, fill out an application. While a few refugees received new or almost new furniture for their apartment, for the most, many received used and in some cases broken chairs and very little kitchenware. In one case in Tucson a family of six received one pot to make food for the entire family. Jabbir Algarawi, an Iraqi refugee himself in the 1990s, founded the Arizona Refugee Center in the early 2000 and served on the board until 2004. “These refugees are mistreated and receive poor service by the sponsor agencies” Jabbir stated. “They insult people’s belief and religion such as wearing the Hijab,a religious head cover.” he stated. Jabbir thinks that the refugee agencies don’t like community organizations like his to get involved because they see it as competition over funding. Instead they have their caseworkers lead community like programs to prevent community involvement, he said. “State coordinator Charles Shipman is not doing his job, the previous coordinator we had before him was better” Jabbir added. “The State Coordinator is influenced by the refugee agencies, explained Jabbir. He thinks that agencies spend lots of money on upgrading their office furniture and computers every year rather than spending it on the refugees. “When I volunteered to help these agencies I was considered an angel but when I started a refugee support organization and received some funding I became a disliked person, its all a business”

Jabbir elaborated. Jabbir writes letters regularly to the State Coordinator and the Secretary of State on issues related to refugees. Rosalind worked for Arizona Refugee Center (ARC) for a few years and she witnessed mistreatment in some cases. “Some agencies spread rumors about us because our center had a good reputation among the refugee community”. When asked what kind of rumors she said “accusation of harassments of women, which is totally untrue”. Rosalind said that agencies push refugees to take jobs and when the refugees discover they are not good jobs or way below their qualifications, in some cases the refugees are doctors and engineers, the agency refuses to help them further. Refugees face tremendous pressure from lack of services and jobs which in many cases lead to depression and even suicide like the case of an Iraqi widow who attempted suicide in 2009. “There is a lot of politics in the refugee work and competition among agencies to get the limited funds available from government, foundations, and private sources” Rosalind added. Both refugees and the refugee resettlement agencies are frustrated each for different reasons, but the end result is the same. The result is failure to provide a comfortable resettlement and peace of mind for the refugees. Even though, grievance procedures exist refugees do not know how or too scared in some cases to complain. They fear the consequences. The lack of accountability and serious measures to overlook the work of the agencies, the case managers and caseworkers gives agencies a sense of security. There is a need to keep reminding those who work with refugees that a refugee has gone through tough times before arriving. They came to this country to escape hardship to a better and more humane place. In reality, they face, in many cases, emotional and economic torture.


MARCH 2010


WORD ON THE STREET- “Do you think Avatar Emerging need to collaborate has any political meaning behind it?” Muslim Voice Riad Sbai – “I think the film Avatar had a lot of symbolism engraved into it. The whole mineral war had many similarities with the current oil war today, and I think James Cameron did a good job of portraying both sides.” Noreen Akhter“The movie showed how powerful countries can attack less-developed countries for their personal gain. We see a lot of this going on in the world today.” Junayd Akhter- “I think Avatar showed a side of the human race as hurting animals. The Avatar people were more like animals and they were being forced out of their natural homes.” Tasneem Turk- “I think that Avatar did have a political meaning saying that the “Sky People” wanted to take over their tree and land in Pandora just to benefit themselves. This is similar to how Israel wanted to take over Palestine just for their

benefit of a Zionist state. However people stuck together in the end to fight back.” Qammer Alzubaidi- “I believe Avatar had a lot to do with all the oppressions going on around the world such as Palestine/Israel, U.S./ Iraq. One dealing with land owning and the other with oil. I was really interested that the movie could relate so much to the oil power thirst they have in Iraq and how it related the army general fighting to what ever cost, even destroying the peoples homes (which happens in Palestine with the Israelis going to such costs of destroying other peoples homes in order to just get the land they want). What also surprised me was that there was a soldier went A-wall in the middle of the job and saying that she didn’t sign up for this kind of thing...meaning that she didn’t sign up in order to go and kill people who just want to live peacefully in their ancestors home. What I really liked was the similarity between the Avatars defeating the human army with nothing more than spears and huge birds and the Palestinian people frightening the Israeli army with nothing more than rocks and regular old guns. I’m glad to have watched that movie and I would gladly do it again...I just wonder how the production media even let it through.” Ambereen Ameer- “I think it is an exceptionally political film, especially with its themes of

Dad accused of killing daughter won’t face death By Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) _ Prosecutors say a Glendale father accused o f running down and killing his daughter in what was described as an ‘honor killing’ will not face the death penalty. Maricopa County prosecutors announced the decision in the case against 48-yearold Faleh Almaleki. His attorney asked a judge to take special precautions to ensure that prosecutors wouldn’t seek the death penalty because Almaleki is

Western imperialism. What James Cameron, I think, is trying to say is that the Earth (or, I daresay, America) is getting greedier and greedier with its excess consumption of natural resources and money. What other option do they have but to “visit” another planet (or Iraq and its oil...going back to the America example) and take those said resources? Ultimately, James Cameron is saying that Western developed countries have had a long history of exhausting their own resources and goods and then invade smaller countries to take their natural commodities, only to drive those countries into deeper poverty and political corruption.”

Protesters dressed as characters from the movie “Avatar” to draw attention to their campaign against the controversial Israeli barrier during a protest by Palestinians, Israelis and foreign activists in the West Bank village of Bilin near Ramallah February 12, 2010

He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Imagine if an established Mosque helps a developing Mosque learn their way and avoid repeating the mistakes of the established Mosque. Imagine an institution taking advice from one that was established many years ago to help it take off the ground. Imagine the time and effort saved by learning from others who have been through it all. Imagine if all our Mosques announce the same Jummah message on one Friday. Imagine if all the Mosques issued one statement on any social, economic or health issue to the community and not just when Eid or Ramadan is. It seems that Muslims come together in crisis only. If a terrorist act takes place all Mosques and organizations rush to denounce it sometimes collectively and others individually. Why can’t these collective statements come in normal times when no disaster hits? Why don’t our institutions meet regularly to discuss our community affairs and issues regular monthly statements, as well as annual reports? The results will be powerful and its affects will be felt across the community and outside of it too. We will become a stronger community that makes its members proud and others respect it even more. Opponents of our community will begin looking at us differently and recalculate their positions and tactics. Collaboration is the key to success and empowerment. This is an invitation to our community Mosques, organizations and institutions to come together and begin working together on the most basic common grounds. This will ensure our viability and expedite our growth as a community.

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The Iraqi immigrant is accused of killing his daughter by using his Jeep Cherokee to run her down along with another woman in a Peoria parking lot Oct. 20 because the girl had become ``too Westernized.


Our Muslim community is growing and with it are the community Mosques, organizations and institutions. Mosques are spread into areas and regions and organizations and institutions are becoming more specialized in certain areas to serve the community. Even though many Mosques and organizations are successful at what they provide they fail in one area, collaboration.

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MARCH 2010

The Pop Culture of Hijab

Iraqi community influx in Arizona

By Farouq Al-Hashimi

By: Sumbal Akhter

There were a number of meetings that took place bringing Iraqi community leaders together and have resulted in forming the Iraqi Cultural Association (ICA) a non-profit, non- political, non-religious and non-nationalist organization. The missions of this organization are: (1) To comfort the Iraqi new immigrants in their new homes by providing the social and family environment. (2) To make it possible for their voices to be heard by their State and Federal representatives. (3) To unite and to strengthen the ties among Iraqi community by promoting the cultural understanding among its members and also with the American society. (4) To help the Iraqi immigrants to prepare and to understand their responsibilities in applying for American citizenship. (5) To promote the understanding of Iraq history, culture, and contribution to the world civilization by having exhibits, art shows, theatre plays and other suitable activities. ICA held the first open election and open counting of votes last month. The board of directors were elected and

Results of the election are as follows: Farouk Al-Hashimi: Votes 72.2%



Rawaa Hassan: Vice Chairman, 44 votes Baker Al-Ghrani : 41 votes Basma Al-Hashimi: 36 votes Riyad Al-Alak: 35 votes Yalda Daniel: 29 votes Hassan Al-Awssie: Treasurer



effortlessly create fantastic twists and whimsical flowers with the cloth of the hijab for a unique look.

Muslim Voice

according to the number of votes, they became the Executive Committee.

The Iraqi community in Arizona has grown in the last two years. Over 5,000 Iraqi refugees have already arrived to Phoenix this year; the government Immigration sources stated that around 17,000 Iraqis scheduled to arrive to the US in 2010. More than 5,000 Iraqis scheduled to arrive to Arizona. Although there is no available dependable data about Iraqi community here in Arizona, but from the numbers of business opened by Iraqis this is and indication that the Iraqi community is growing rapidly.


You can visit ICA’s website at: iraqic to learn more about its activities. ICA opens its arms to embrace all Iraqis for the purpose of serving the whole Iraqi Community. At the present time, they created a number of committees to serve Iraqis in Arizona. The reception Committee, the Communication Committee, Employment Committee, Art & Theatre Committee, Continuous Education Committee and the Iraqi Cultural Committee. The Association has been active in helping the new Iraqis by providing some financial help, household materials, some residential help and also, some consulting. The Association was the main promoter to make Arizona as An Election Center equally to Michigan, California and Maryland for holders of Iraqi citizenship. The Iraqi national election will be held on March 7, 2010. The places here in Arizona where Iraqis can vote will be announced shortly. There are many big jobs for Iraqis to contribute. The Association is calling on all Iraqis to help and assist in any fashion possible. The Association meets every first Thursday of the month at Glendale Public Library.

Hello Kitty, McDonald’s, Michael Jackson; these are all pop culture icons of our time. As unseeming as it may sound, the hijab, head cover, is popping up everywhere in the mainstream and is on its way to becoming a pop culture icon as well. For example, the hiphop scene has adopted the Spanish-style hijab into many of their videos. Jennifer Lopez famously wore her hijab-style head wrap to the 2006 MTV Video Music Awards. The idea of the hijab is becoming glamorized and is influencing young girls to take action as well. Driving over to the craft store to fetch some beads and crystals to sew and glue onto the hijab is becoming a prevalent trend with some teenagers. Purchasing embroidered templates to iron onto the hijab is also fueling the “Do-ItYourself” viewpoint of the movement. The aspect of convenience is also exercised by some young women with wearing the hijab. Some use the hijab as a means of a hands-free cell phone as they go about their daily tasks. Another reappearing trend is “hijab styling”, which is where women get their hijabs styled for special occasions instead of their hair. Hijab styling is ideal for big events like one’s wedding day where hijab-stylists

Books have also been written on the pop culture hijab, like Faegheh Shirazi’s novel The Veil Unveiled: The Hijab in Modern Culture. The book explores the uses and misuses

of the veil in modern culture, both Eastern and Western and in Muslim and non-Muslim societies. The symbolism of hijab is investigated through political, historical and cultural domains through media, literature and more. So who knows? Hello Kitty, McDonald’s, Michael Jackson… the hijab could definitely be added to a list of infinite pop culture icons.

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MARCH 2010


Freedom of speech and Democracy in our Mosques By: Mohammed W. Alzaidi, Esq. I recently made my first pilgrimage to Mecca and the experience was spiritually transcendent and unforgettable. Despite differences in national origin, sect, race, language, and social standing, three million Muslims from one hundred countries came together in unity to pray and do the Hajj as people of one faith to the one true God. In sharp contrast to this, in our valley mosques we hear about the chaotic meetings where attendees are silenced through intimidation, insults, name-calling and even via restraining orders. Most of us came from nations that deny its citizens freedom of speech and human rights. However, we are now living in a country that gives its citizens the right and freedom to speak out, voice their opinion, and stand up for what they believe. Many of us left other nations to come to America for that very reason. In light of this fact, those in charge of these mosques should encourage members of their community to speak out and voice their opinions. They should welcome sincere questions asked by members of their community regarding the affairs of the mosques. In America, we also have a viable election process that takes place every few years on a local, state, and national level. This process

holds elected officials accountable. The electorate votes out the officials who do not adequately perform their duties in office. In our countries of origin, this was not always the case. Likewise, it goes without saying that when we see the same faces running our mosques year after year, the tendency is for these leaders to begin to believe that the mosque is their own house and not a house of worship for the entire community. There have been instances of threatening people with criminal charges, among other things, if one even raises a voice in disagreement. Eventually, it appears that the leadership is not elected at all. Further, some mosques have no members. Without members to vote every year, it is impossible to hold those in leadership accountable if they do not do a good job. Members should participate and vote every year to elect the board that will run the affairs of the mosque. Without this, there is no accountability. We can have differing opinions on issues and still respect one another. We need dialogue about what needs to be done to improve the way that the mosques are run—instead of shouting matches and uncivilized meetings. When there is chaos at such meetings, the result is animosity between the attendees

and the mosque leadership . It is not acceptable to attack the character or the motive of anyone who asks a question at such meetings. It is not right to question the religious devotion, faith or Moslem identity of a person because he or she happens to disagree with those running the mosques. Moreover, it is not right to use the “F” word. Yes, that “F” word, Fitna, to attack people who disagree with you. My heartfelt prayer is that our community would achieve the stature of the magnificent and awe-inspiring experience that I had with my three million brothers and sisters in Mecca. It was a sea of humanity gathered for the one purpose of worshiping of God. We were neither separated by sects nor by social standing. We all faced the one Khabba and prayed as one people of one faith, the Moslem faith, to the one true God. Let us be an example to the world of what is good and worth emulation. I also pray that the mosques in the valley, their boards and Imams will always graciously welcome the people attending the mosques, and receive their comments and questions with an open mind. I pray that they will always remember that these people support the mosques by their attendance and donations of their hard-earned money every Friday afternoon and whenever asked. Without them, there will be no mosques.

Black America’s Path to Islam

By Ahmad Daniels, M.Ed.

“Had Elijah Muhammad tried to introduce an orthodox form of Arab oriented Islam, I doubt if he would have attracted 500 people. But he introduced a form of Islam that could communicate with the people he had to deal with. He was the king to those who had no king; he was the Messiah to those some people thought unworthy of a Messiah.”

their sense of self-rejection before setting many on a journey that would lead to orthodox Islam. But we are getting ahead of ourselves.

In Islam in Black America, author Edward E. Curtis IV immediately acknowledges a tension common with the history of religion. “The tension exists, he says, “between the idea on one hand, that a religious tradition is universally applicable to the experience of

perspective, Lincoln argued that religious elements of the movement, including its Islamic “mystique” were incidental to its success.” The practices and dictates of Elijah Muhammad, founder and once spiritual leader of the Nation of Islam (Black Muslims) were able to do what social agencies could not; pull heroin needles out of the arms of Black men, convince women to stop prostituting

Dr. John Henrik Clarke, Historian Just about a year ago I was having dinner with three other men. One was a Muslim from the Middle East and an attorney. Our conversation some how shifted to the Nation of Islam and the teachings of Elijah Muhammad. The attorney was quick to dismiss the prominent figures in African American Islam as heretics, cultists and sectarians. I was quick to retort and convincingly identified the virtues of modern African American Islamic thought. He, like many traditional Muslim, was unaware and quick to judge. In order to begin to understand Black America’s path to Islam I would suggest three books: The Autobiography of Malcolm X as dictated to Alex Haley, Islam in Black America by Edward E. Curtis IV, and The Measure of a Man by Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Dr. King was a Christian. Yet, few Christians have been able to articulate the plight of the Black man here in the United States with the clarity and sense of urgency like Dr. King. It was the political oppression, economic exploitation, and social degradation, coming on the heels of centuries of enslavement interwoven into social customs and law, that made the plight of Black Americans unique. It would take the unifying qualities of Islam to bring together large numbers of Blacks and set them on a path that would first address

all human beings and the idea, on the other hand, that a religious tradition is applicable to the experience of one particular group of human beings. Dr. John Henrik Clarke’s quote (see above) forthrightly and clearly addressed this in his having stated the adherence of an Arab oriented Islam would have only appealed to a few hundred Blacks at best. Dr. Clarke knew, as did prominent Black figures like Edward W. Blyden, Noble Drew Ali, Elijah Muhammad, Malcolm X and Wallace D. Muhammad, that religion exists to address the social needs of a people. The social needs of Black America could not have been addressed by an Islam imported straight from the Middle East. Edward Curtis, in referencing C. Eric Lincoln’s classic work, The Black Muslims in America, writes, “Viewing the Nation of Islam from a functionalist

their bodies, etc. The originator of the respected street saying, “You can’t lead where you don’t go—you can’t teach what you don’t know” must have had Elijah Muhammad in mind. It was his vision of an earnest and self-efficient Black nation, what he referred to as the “Lost and Found Nation,” that would set into motion an embryonic religious movement whose reverberations continue to send waves throughout Black America; a Black community striving to realize self-empowerment and self-respect. A major difference that existed between traditional Islam and the Nation of Islam was the exclusion of whites from membership. If the purpose of Prophet Muhammad, 6th century, was to proclaim a unity to a people worshipping more than one God, Elijah Muhammad’s reason for being was to assist

Black people in getting back in touch with their God-like qualities. Elijah Muhammad was very clear on how he envisioned his life’s work; “My people must be dealt with on a special basis, because their background and circumstances are different from those prevailing elsewhere in the world. You cannot use the same medicine to treat altogether different diseases.” The legacy of the Nation of Islam and its forerunners in a real sense parallels the conditions of Black America. Many of the maladies that plagued 20th century Black America are no longer as dangerous to the body politic. For certain challenges continue to call for creative and dedicated men and women willing and able to make a difference in Black America. Many present day African Americans who practice traditional Islam and over fifty years of age are very likely to have been a member of the Nation of Islam prior to the passing of Elijah Muhammad. In the interest of full disclosure I too was a “first generation” (under the spiritual leadership of Elijah Muhammad) member of the Nation of Islam. Muslim brothers and sisters from the Middle-East and elsewhere would be wise to study Black America’s journey throughout the history of the United States. There are many lessons to be learned from the Holocaust of Enslavement and subsequent decades of de jure and de facto Apartheid. Perhaps had the attorney at dinner done his “homework” he would have been more knowledgeable of the effectiveness of the Nation of Islam and its similarities to traditional Islam. I and others contend there is ample room at the table for all; Sunni, Ahmadiyya, Shiite, Nation of Islam, etc. History tells us all too clearly if we are absent from the table there exists a chance of ending up on the menu.

6 MARCH 2010 NATIONAL Body Scanners Violate Decency: Scholars

By Dina Rabie, IOL Staff

WASHINGTON – Muslim criticized have scholars the use of body scanners for security in US airports as a violation of religious teachings on decency not only in Islam but in all faiths, asserting that officials need to be educated on respecting people’s religious convictions. “The scanners are un-Islamic and against decency,” Sheikh Ali Suleiman Ali, a member of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA), told The FCNA, based in Indiana, has issued a statement against Full Body Security Scanners on the ground of violating Islamic teachings that men or women be seen naked by other men and women. The scanners, also known as nude-body scanners, have been installed in airports after the December 25 foiled plane bombing attempt by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a Nigerian Muslim.

private parts should not be violated other than in terms of necessity,” stressed Dr Ihsan Bagby, a member of FCNA Executive Council.


“These screening devices show the private parts of both men and women.”

“They need to be educated about that. We need to educate them.”

FCNA advised Muslims to insist on having alternatives of nude body scanning like the patting down search. have won’t “Muslims a problem to the pat-down search,” said Sheikh Ali, also the imam of the Canton Mosque. He insisted that it is not only Muslims who have spoken out against the controversial body scanners. “We know that Christian and Jewish groups do not approve this too.” The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a grassroots civil rights Muslim group, has thrown its weight behind the FCNA fatwa. Balance

“A general and public use of such scanners is against the teachings of Islam, natural law and all religions and cultures that stand for decency and modesty,” said the FCNA.

asserted scholars The that American Muslims, estimated at nearly 7 million, fully support any necessary measures for the safety and protection of all passengers. “We are not against security,” insisted Imam Ali, the FCNA member.

basically fatwa “The reiterates the fact that privacy and guarding the

“We are concerned about the security and safety of human beings, but this is not in the

He noted that US officials are not aware of the severity of the issue for Muslims and other religious groups.

Imam Ali believes that officials should understand the urgency of finding other alternatives for body scanning that does not jeopardize people’s morality. “We wish the government takes this seriously. This has to do with ethics and dignity of human beings.” Dr. Begby, a prominent African American convert and a professor of Islamic Kentucky at Studies University, agrees. He believes officials are likely unaware of the high emotions Muslims have regarding the body scanning issue. “It is a major religious concern and not a matter of inconvenience for Muslims.” He insists that moves like the FCNA fatwa are not about heaping criticism or being misdemeanant, but rather about education. “The fatwa is to make officials notice that this is a very serious religious issue. It is our responsibility to reach out to US officials and educate them on the matter.”

On the Use of Full Body Scanners The Statement of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA)

The Full Body Security called (also Scanners Nude-body scanners) are being installed at various airports in United States and Europe.

rights human Several and religious groups have expressed their concerns and disapproval of such scanners on the grounds of violation of privacy and human dignity. The Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA) emphasizes that a general and public use of such scanners is against the teachings of Islam, natural law and all religions and cultures that stand for modesty. and decency It is a violation of clear Islamic teachings that men or women be seen naked by other men and women. Islam highly emphasizes and (modesty) ‘haya’ considers it part of faith. The Qur’an has commanded the believers, both men and women, to cover their private parts. Human beings are urged to be modest in their dress. See Holy Quran, 7:26-27; 24:30-31; 33:59. Exception to this rule can be made in case of extreme

necessity, such as medical treatment, to investigate a crime or in a situation of imminent danger. There must be a compelling case for the necessity and the exemption to this rule must be proportional to the demonstrated need. FCNA fully supports the necessary measures for the safety and protection of all passengers. It is, however, deeply concerned about the use of nude body scanners for this purpose. FCNA recommends that instead of producing and displaying a picture of the body, software should be designed to produce only the picture of questionable materials on an outline of the body. Further, other technologies could be used that detect the presence without explosives of infringing on modesty as some European leaders have pointed out. the appreciates FCNA alternate provision of patdown search (when needed) and therefore recommend to Muslims to avail this option over the nude body scanners.

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MARCH 2010

America and the Muslim World: Real Progress?


Muslim Political Experts on American-Islamic Relations The US-Muslim world relations have been the focus of several decision making institutions and political experts since Obama took office more than a year ago. The new US administration has repeatedly announced a new era of dialogue and multilateralism, which is entirely different from that of Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush. The Seventh US-Islamic World Forum, recently concluded in Doha, is a sign of an American genuine interest in improving the US-Muslim world relations. However, many analysts still think the US actions have not yet spoken louder than words. Obama’s Cairo speech to the Muslim world last year created a sense of optimism and high expectations among Muslims worldwide. The Muslim world has been awaiting actions on several major issues of concern, with hope pinned on Obama’s promises of turning a new page of common interests and mutual respect. has contacted a diverse number of Muslim political experts and activists across the Muslim world to demonstrate their views on the USMuslim relations and Obama’s policies toward their countries after more than one year in office.

that they can help millions of displaced and refugee families. We are a rich country stuck in a hard security situation, and we can make a difference.

of American Jingoism. He is first and foremost American more than Muslim or African. So we will be committing a mistake if we are to see Obama through his background. We should see him through his Americanism.

Nevertheless, Obama is doing a very good job. One year is a short period to evaluate his work; however, I trust his good intentions. He was the first US president in decades that tried to make good relations with the Arab World and took US troops out from our streets.

Lina Assad Al-Dulaimi - Iraq

We need much more from him, and 2010 is his great chance to help rebuild Iraq after the large destruction caused by Bush’s government. Mutiullah Tayeb - Afghanistan Researcher and specialist in Central Asian affairs Obama’s strategy in Afghanistan was a big failure in 2009, because of local insurgency and corruption. He failed to find a transparent Afghani partner to count on, and by accepting the results of the fraudulent elections, he also lost his political credibility among Afghani public opinion, and now you can hardly find anyone who differentiates between Obama and Bush.

He is trying to follow his promises concerning troops withdrawal, an important issue that will calm down insurgency. More criminals are coming out in our land because people are starving, living under deteriorated conditions as a result of a war caused by the US government.

Ramzy Baroud - Palestine Political Analyst & Writer

Dr. Manar El-Shorbagy - Egypt

In Cairo, on June 4, 2009, Obama purportedly addressed the Muslim World. Then, he made many promises, none of which have actualized. I repeatedly warned of the hyped expectations and of Obama’s own shifting rhetoric and moral flexibility. He was and remains a politician.

Professor of political science, University in Cairo (AUC)

Israel, its lobbies, and US interests proved more powerful than rhetoric about hope and change. Muslims and Arabs need to understand that only their unity would create the needed momentum, the required pressure to make Obama or any other person back their rhetoric with action. Otherwise, we are in for a long wait. Khalid Rahman - Pakistan General Director of the Institute of Policy Studies Today, a glance over the US role particularly in Pakistan and Afghanistan during the year depicts a tendency of continuation and consolidation rather than change. This tendency is clearly evident in Obama’s Afghanistan and Pakistan strategies, wherein, instead of coming up with an alternative strategy to the use of force, he decided to bring in more troops to Afghanistan. He has also allowed drone attacks to increase on parts of Pakistan, in the name of partnership and alliance in the Swat valley, and has squeezed the Pakistani government not to go for any negotiated settlement with its own people but just to attack them. As a result, Pakistanis have seen extensive civilian casualties, destruction of large areas, and violent reactions from the residents of those areas. Abdel-Latef Muhammad Al-Ghrair - Iraq Professor of political science, Al-Mustansiriyah University Obama did not do anything to Iraq rather than taking his troops away from streets. Before we blame Obama, we have to blame our own government that has not until now given us enough reasons to believe



I think that we cannot look at Obama’s policy in Egypt without looking at his general view of America’s foreign policy. I think it is one of the most important tasks that the new president when he first took office wanted to do in foreign policy to change the American Era globally. Obama wanted the US to come across as more cooperative, less confrontational, and more sort of listening to what other countries want to say. Therefore, this would be the general sight of the ambitions of Obama’s administration in its first year, and Egypt is no exception. I think that Obama’s administration has put the relationship with Egypt back to what it was before G.W. Bush. In other words, the relationship has been looked at not as to how to develop it further as much as how to bring it back to where it was. The most important thing is to bring it back to where it was, which is focusing really on the relationship with Egypt in the essence of its role in regional issues. In addition, relying on the Egyptian role in that and putting less emphasis on the other issues that were the reason for confrontation. Dr. Abdu Sudan


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Thus, even if he was not the person who authorised it, as a new president, he has to take the responsibility and show his real intentions to help Iraqis, not by speeches but by actions, which have not been seen yet. Khalid Amayreh - Palestine Journalist & analyst I think most Muslims, including myself, believe that President Obama’s first year in office has been a great disappointment. There is simply a conspicuously huge gap between the promises and undertakings he made in his Cairo Speech in June, 2009, and the present policies and actions of his administration. Take for example his approach to the Palestinian cause. He had been insisting that Israel would have to freeze the illegal building of Jewish-only settlements on occupied Arab lands in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. He also repeatedly called on Israel to end the manifestly murderous blockade of the Gaza Strip. However, we see that Obama has been utterly powerless to enforce his administration’s declared policy vis-à-vis Israel, even with regard to relatively petty matters such as freezing the construction of a settler building in East Jerusalem or preventing the demolition of an Arab home in the Old City. He has also been silent in the face of the Nazi-like Jewish settler attacks on Palestinians and their property, a stand he probably would not adopt had the victims been Jewish, not Arabs. As to the issue of democracy and human rights in the Arab World, Obama is ostensibly embracing dictators and tyrants in the Arab countries. This means that he is not really different from previous American presidents. In short, Obama’s words speak louder than his actions, however eloquent they may be.


We, Muslims, have been let down by the new US president. At the theoretical level, Obama, who comes from a Christo-Muslim family, could have acted as a bridge between the two sides. However, in practice, he could not change the nature of the US political system, which is deeply entrenched in anti-Islamism and heavily influenced by Jewish lobbies as well as Christian conservatives. Obama, though originally African, is in the final analysis a product

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As far as ensuring that “Palestinians can live and work and develop their society” is nothing but a pipe dream, considering that Palestinians in Gaza subsist at the brink of starvation, it needs to be stressed that the siege on Gaza would have not been possible without the US support.

I see Obama’s foreign policy in Iraq as weak and walking as a turtle. Local aid workers expected more attention from his government to displaced families. The majority are victims of the US invasion and lost their homes during the last seven years. The minimum he could do is offering a fund to overcome this problem. He has a good policy and shows a kind heart, but he is forgetting Iraq. Iraq has to be taken more seriously. If you google the recent news about our country, rarely will you find a positive article about Obama’s policy in Iraq. The press does reflect the reality of Iraq.

More American soldiers died and more Afghani civilians died too in Obama’s first year. He could not reduce civilian causalities, and by sending more troops to Afghanistan he will likely intensify the war, even when he is talking about an exit strategy.

The Obama administration faltered in its initial demand of a complete Israeli freeze, and it is now harassing the ineffective leadership of Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank to return to the negotiation table without conditions.

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MARCH 2010

Hijab... American Experience

By Dina Rabie, IOL Staff WASHINGTON – Sara Uddin smiles as she adjusts her black hijab after performing Friday prayers with scores other Muslim girls and women.

“But when I came back to Washington I did notice a couple of stares from the

“I want to defeat all stereotypes with my hijab and the only way to do it is to speak out about it,” she told Sara, 22, has been wearing hijab for nearly 4 years now. “When I first wore it I was in high school in San Diego, California, and it was great. The place is so much diverse there and people are exposed to different cultures and different faiths,” she recalled.

“I feel that it is a good thing whenever I get comments because it gets me to explain that this is who I am and this is why I do it.” Islam sees hijab as an obligatory code of dress, not a religious symbol displaying one’s affiliations.

Now it is time to go out again, and Sara is always ready for any questions, stares or even negative misconceptions about the small piece of cloth that covers her head.

“I am American, I was born here and I have friends here,” says Sara, who works in a bank, confidently.

20, she did not feel much difference in the way people treated her. But Jasmin Ullah, from Herndon, Northern Virginia, believes there are many stereotypes about hijab in America, and it is hard to fight them sometimes. “When you first walk to a room they do not expect

“And I am a Muslim and these are the rules of Islam and I am sticking to them.”

“I am a Muslim and these are the rules of Islam and I am sticking to them,” says Sara.

non-Muslim community, I knew they might not be the same.” Sara says that though she does not receive any real attacks because of her hijab, negative viewpoints are something she certainly faces.

“I work in public health now, and I meet scores of people on daily basis. I never felt that my hijab makes me less competent in their eyes.” Amina, who now lives in Maryland with her parents and two sisters, was not wearing hijab when she first came to the US 13 years ago with her family.


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Jasmin, who began wearing hijab at 11, believes that there are many obstacles, but not barriers, ahead of hijab-clad American Muslim women. “Post 9/11 America is much more prejudiced than before.”

“I think that is another reason to be open about it and speak out in general,” she insists.

No Barrier For Amina Saleh, 24, hijab has never been a barrier to reach any of her goals in life.

as abnormal. I want them to know I am a normal person with a hijab rather than a rebel.”

Sara, the banker, agrees that hijab sometimes brings more challenges to Muslim girls and women in society.

Though there are no official figures, America is estimated to be home to nearly 7-8 million Muslims.



“So even if there are hurdles, I’m keeping it on.”

“I do not want them to see me as abnormal. I want them to know I am a normal person with a hijab rather than a rebel,” says Jasmin.

you to be outspoken,” says Jasmin, 16. “Back of their minds they think ‘she can’t really want this’, they think you must be a quiet subservient woman who has no opinion to express.” Jasmin, a college student who also has two jobs, boasts that in most cases when people get to know her they understand that hijab does not by any means restrict her personality. “I do not want them to see me

Jasmin, who has Bangladeshi background, says Muslim girls and women should always find a way to overcome obstacles and do what they want in life. “For example I like to swim, and that could prove to be difficult. But my hijab should not be a barrier; it should encourage me to find a creative way to do what I love with my hijab.” Jasmin believes the recipe for any hijabi girl is that she should be herself. “If you are a political activist, do not be afraid of expressing your views. If you are an athlete, go for it. If you are in a class room, you should be good at it. “God does not want us to give up things so wonderful.”

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MARCH 2010

Mosque Vandalism Unites Nashville Faiths & Newspapers A vandalism attack on a Tennessee mosque has prompted leaders of different faiths to join hands to fight religious and racial hatred in the south-eastern American state. “As Jews, we have been subjected to similar attacks on our synagogues and communal institutions in Nashville over the years and can empathize with your anguish,” Steve Edelstein, executive director of the Jewish Federation, writes in a letter to Muslim leaders and cited by The Tennessean. “As God’s children, we must all speak out against

intolerance, bigotry and the resulting violence.” Christian leaders also expressed solidarity with Muslims, with Rev. James “Tex” Thomas of Jefferson Street Baptist Church planning to visit the mosque.

and Israel.


Police investigators are looking at the attack as a possible hate crime.

The attack has prompted Nashville Muslims to launch a discussion on religious tolerance to raise awareness about Islam.

The incident was the first attack on the mosque,

Al-Farooq Mosque on Fourth Avenue, in Nashville, south Tennessee, was vandalized. The attackers spray-painted “Muslim go home” and several crosses in red on the exterior of the Muslim worship place. An expletive and hate-filled letter was also left behind at the mosque’s youth center stating that Islam is the enemy and that the religion is trying to destroy the US

established in 2003. In 2008, a mosque in Columbia, about 40 miles south of Nashville, was destroyed by an arson fire. The attacker was handed a 14-year prison sentence.

“We want people to understand what we believe,” said Rashed Fakhruddin, board member at the Islamic Center on 12th Avenue South, the event organizer. The open house event will include a presentation on Muslim beliefs and an interfaith panel discussion. Local faith leaders will also discuss the mosque vandalism and religious tolerance. Leading among attendees will be Al-Farooq center


spokesman Salaad Nur and Jewish community activist Rev. James Thomas. Fakhruddin said the mosque attack has re-energized local interfaith efforts. The attack also showed that violence against one faith hurts the entire community, he said. A recent survey by the Pew Research Center showed that the majority of Americans know very little about Islam. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll also showed that more than half Americans already hold negative views about the faith. Though there are no official figures, America is believed to be home to nearly seven million Muslims.

Prayerful Obama & Newspapers CAIRO – Though his faith is largely absent from the public eye, religion is believed to be playing a major role in US President Barack Obama’s life. “[He is] a prayerful guy,” one senior official told the Washington Post on Thursday, February 4. Although Obama has rarely showed up at church events and has not yet chosen a church in Washington, aides insist religion plays a significant role in his life.

from the work of Protestant theologian Reinhold Niebuhr, who has championed the “just war” theory. Other devotionals come from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer, which Obama was given as a gift at last year’s prayer breakfast. At weekends, Obama brings a Navy chaplain to minister to his family and holds a form of Sunday school at Camp David to his two daughters.

One official said the messages come from Joshua Dubois, the director of the Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. They sometimes include a passage of Scripture or a psalm or focus on a book that Dubois expects Obama would enjoy. The devotionals have been taken

Obama has cited Niebuhr’s theory in his thinking about the Afghan war strategy and in his Nobel peace Prize acceptance speech. Last month, he told a congregation at the Vermont Avenue Baptist Church on the anniversary of Martin Luther King that faith keeps him calm in pressing times. “There are times when I am not

Obama, the son of a Muslimturned-atheist Kenyan father and a white American mother that did not practice religion, describes himself as a proud follower of the Trinity United Church of Christ.

They say he often prays in private. Every morning, Obama receives daily devotionals, short religious services, through his BlackBerry.

president “had a lot on his plate.”

“There are times when it feels like all these efforts are for not, that change is so painfully slow in coming and I have to confront my own doubt. “During those times it is faith that keeps me calm.”

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Important Aides say that religion has helped Obama in taking decisions during hard times of his first year in office. “Part of that even temperament comes from his faith which is an important component,” said senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.

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MARCH 2010

Muslim Films at Sundance Film Festival 2010 Nesima Aberra Muslim Voice Every year in late January, the stars and leading figures of Hollywood descend on Park City, Utah, to attend the acclaimed Sundance Film Festival where fresh, independent films debut to an eager crowd. Out of the 200 films the festival selects annually, a notable four films premiered at this year’s Sundance that were centered on Muslims and/or produced by Muslims: The Oath, Bilal’s Stand, The Taqwacores and Four Lions. The Oath is a political documentary directed by Laura Poitras that centers on two brothers-in-law, Abu Jandal and Salim Hamdan,

both tied together by their involvement with al-Qaeda in the ‘90s. The story follows how they became Osama bin Laden’s bodyguard and personal driver and their lives ended up in drastically different places. Jandal went on to become a taxi driver in Yemen, while Hamdan is absent for the film, facing military tribunals in Guantanamo Bay’s prison. Poitras filmed in both Yemen and Guantanamo Bay and crafted a delicate storyline exposing the complexities and misunderstood preconceptions of those involved in jihad and terror plots, seeking to humanize the harsh situation. The Oath received an Excellence in Cinematography award. Bilal’s Stand, directed by Sultan Sharrief, is a semi-

autobiographical film about a black Muslim teenager named Bilal and his struggle to get top grades to attend a good university, while helping his family run their taxi stand in Detroit. The movie was shot over a period of five years by the University of Michagan graduate, with local volunteers and student involvement. Bilal’s Stand was accepted as part of the Sundance NEXT category, highlighting low-budget films from “younger, fresher’ American filmmakers that live and breathe true indie spirit.”” The Taqwacores, directed by Eyad Zahra, follows Yusef, a first-generation Pakistani engineering student, who houses with a group of Muslim outcasts. There he

learns of a new underground movement known as tqwacore—essentially a fusion of hard”core” and “taqwa” faith. Yusuf meets a colorful cast of characters including a punk Sufi, a burqa-wearing riot girl feminist and a Shi’a skinhead. He journeys to reconcile his identity and beliefs within his religion alongside the rebellious nature of taqwcore and his new friends. The film, based on the controversial novel of the same name by Michael Muhammad Knight, a convert to Islam, explores the issues of faith and progressive culture that young Muslims deal with today in America. Four Lions takes an unusual spin on the issue of terrorism with humor

and satire No surprise there, since the film was directed by British comedian, Chris Morris. Four Lions is about a group of British jihadists searching for glory through a suicide plot in London. The director based the story on three years of research and interviews, seeking to look beyond painting people as good or evil. The film claims terrorism is not just about ideology, “it can also be about idiots.” All in all, these films showcase vastly different viewpoints on Muslims, a welcomed step into the mainstream media. Their success and national recognition will help determine the acceptance of more Muslim themed stories and endeavors in the future.

In US mosques, a debate over English By RACHEL ZOLL Associated Press Religion Writer Sana Rahim was born in the cowboy country of southeastern Wyoming, to Pakistani parents who had emigrated so her father could earn a doctorate. She speaks Urdu with her family, but can’t read or write the language. She recites prayers in Arabic, but doesn’t know exactly what each word means. Now a 20-year-old junior at Northwestern University, she, like many other American-born Muslims, is most comfortable with sermons and lectures in English, although they can’t always find U.S. mosques that offer them. ``I don’t really get the time to study Arabic,’’ Rahim said. ``With all the different groups in America, English is a unifying thing that ties us together.’’

it’s mandatory because the Prophet Muhammad gave his sermons in the language. Others say that Muhammad used Arabic only because it was what he and his community spoke, and that Islam is a universal faith. On, a Web forum for Muslims in the West, writer Abu Majeed said in a post last month that while his English-language sermons were accepted without protest at several U.S. mosques, he was derided by one South Florida congregation as a modernist who violated Islamic law. Foreign-born imams, or prayer leaders, who moved here to serve immigrant communities, have sometimes reinforced the thinking that only Arabic is acceptable. Other mosques might use Arabic and Urdu _ a language from Pakistan, India and elsewhere in Asia _ but no English. ``My worry is that younger people who do not

Like Jewish immigrants who fought over Englishlanguage prayer and Roman Catholics who resisted the new Mass in English, U.S. Muslims are waging their own debate about how much English they can use inside mosques without violating Islamic law and abandoning their culture. The issue is part of a broader discussion within the Muslim community about young U.S. Muslims and their alienation from American mosques. Houses of worship founded by older immigrant Muslims often held fast to the culture and language of their native countries. For them, English in the mosque threatened Muslim identity. Their American-born children, however, can’t relate. ``This is a constant problem talked about _ young people in mosques,’’ said Shahed Amanullah, cofounder of, which lists thousands of mosques and reviews from users. ``It’s not just about the Friday prayers. It’s the response that mosques have to the cultural reality of growing up Muslim in America. If young people don’t find what they need in the mosque, they’ll find it on the Internet.’’ The language of obligatory Friday prayers, called juma, is not part of the debate; those prayers must be in Arabic, the language of the Quran. The disagreement focuses on whether that requirement should extend to the sermon, or khutba, on Fridays, the Muslim day of congregational prayer, and other assemblies in the mosque. Imams and scholars who insist on using Arabic say

Some imams bridge the language gap by giving a lecture in English and a short sermon in Arabic at Friday prayer. But only the sermon and the prayer are obligatory. As a result, many people skip the English-language talk, even if they don’t understand the Arabic sermon, said Asad BaYunus, 35, an attorney in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and board member for the Islamic Society of North America. Muslims of South Asian descent often have a particularly strong attachment to using Arabic for sermons because it is a tradition in mosques in their native countries. About one-third of Muslims in the United States are of South Asian descent. Amanullah, 41, said he found a particularly dramatic example of the problem in a predominantly South Asian mosque he visited one Friday in California. The prayer leader read a sermon written in Arabic, even though neither he nor the worshippers understood the language. ``It was the blind leading the blind,’’ Amanullah said. ``Nobody in the room knew what the sermon was about. It could have been a recipe for baba ghanoush and no one would have been the wiser.’’

find the mosque a satisfying experience, and women who find it a hostile environment, will drift away from the mosque,’’ said Abdullahi An-Na’im, a specialist in Islamic law at Emory University School of Law. ``That means the mosque will become the exclusive domain of a very archaic understanding of Islam.’’ On a recent Friday, at the Islamic Cultural Center of New York, Imam Mohamed Shamsi Ali climbed the narrow stairs to the top of the mimbar, or pulpit, and began his sermon in English. The mosque is one of the largest in the city and attracts a diverse group of Muslims who sat shoulder-to-shoulder on the carpeted floor. Shamsi Ali spoke about the need for a positive outlook, human dignity and connecting prayer and fasting with behavior. He underscored his points by quoting Arabic verses from the Quran. The imam is Indonesian and a fluent English speaker who said later in an interview that he struggles with all the invitations he receives to lecture Muslim student groups. ``My schedule is tight because I’m among the very few who can address the English-only speakers,’’ Shamsi Ali said.

Location matters. In small communities comprised of immigrants from many countries, the prayer leaders have no choice but to use English so they can be understood. However, in major cities, immigrants usually arrive in such large numbers that they can find a mosque where their native language is spoken. The growing number of American-born Muslims is likely to force a resolution of the issue. Imam Hassan al-Qazwini leads the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Mich., a community with a mix of recent immigrants and families who have been in the U.S. for generations. When he first arrived at the center in 1997, he noticed most of the mosques in the Dearborn area used Arabic only. He decided to give his sermon first in English, then in Arabic to serve English speakers. He also lectures in English on Friday nights for young Muslims and again on Sundays, even though some older attendees speak only their native language. ``Some people say I’m too Americanized,’’ said al-Qazwini. ``I would say I’m being realistic. We have to be realistic. There are more and more Muslims who are born into this faith in America and there are more and more people who are converting to this faith in America and these are non-Arabic people.’’


MARCH 2010


End of long ordeal for Palestinian refugees as desert camp closes By Dalia Al-Achi in Damascus, Syria

several risks of fire with difficult access to medical services.

Palestinian refugees head towards the buses that will take them to Syria after years in Al Tanf.

UNHCR and its partners – mainly UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East), UNICEF, the World Food Programme, the Palestinian Red Crescent and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent – had provided assistance to the refugees to alleviate their

DAMASCUS, Syria, February 1 (UNHCR) – The UN refugee agency closed the Al Tanf refugee camp between the borders of Syria and Iraqi on Monday and relocated the last of the Palestinian refugees who had been stranded in the bleak noman’s land for nearly four years.

joint efforts with the Syrian authorities and the resettlement countries,” said Philippe Leclerc, UNHCR’s deputy representative in Syria. “However, there are still hundreds of Palestinian refugees from Iraq who are in Al Hol camp in the north-eastern province of Hassake and they also need the same compassion and understanding,” he said. The last moments were filled with emotion and hopes for the future. Families gathered next to the camp’s main entrance, taking a last look at the desert site where they had lived. They were relieved to be leaving, but tense about their uncertain future.

UNHCR, working in cooperation with the Syrian authorities, transferred the last 60 camp residents on Monday morning. They will be housed temporarily at another refugee camp, Al Hol, inside Syria.

Out of the 1,300 Palestinian refugees who had lived at different times in the camp, more than 1,000 were relocated to third countries, including Belgium, Chile, Finland, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

“I am very happy that this is finally over,” said Abu Mohanned, one of the relocated refugees. “We have been waiting for this for such a long time and yet we are anxious about what’s next. We have suffered a lot and have been forced to leave with no document in hand after living 60 years in Iraq. We just want a place that welcomes us and recognizes us as human beings.”

Although the living conditions in Syria’s Al-Hol camp are slightly better, circumstances are not sustainable and a solution is still needed for more than 600 Palestinians from Iraq currently living there.

Al Tanf is a makeshift camp located on a narrow strip in no man’s land between the Syrian and Iraqi borders. It was set up in May 2006 for Palestinian refugees fleeing persecution in Iraq as no country in the region would accept them. Their stay was intended to be temporary but lasted nearly four years, during which the residents had to face harsh desert conditions: extreme temperatures, sandstorms, floods and

suffering. Meanwhile, UNHCR has been actively seeking humanitarian solutions for these refugees by requesting states give them a chance to start a new life. “Today we were able to close this camp and this is a very important step and achievement in responding on a humanitarian basis to the situation of people who were stranded there as a result of fleeing persecution. This is the result of

The exact number of Palestinian who fled Iraq is unknown. Al Tanf is one of three camps that received Palestinian refugees from Iraq. Currently, there are around 2,000 in Al Hol and in Al Waleed camp, which is on the Iraqi side of the border. UNHCR will continue to advocate for a dignified solution for all those Palestinian refugees stranded in camps in 2010.

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MARCH 2010

Pakistan’s Sprint Queen

By Aamir Latif, IOL Correspondent KARACHI – When leaving for Bangladesh in late January to participate in the 11th South Asian Games, Naseem Hameed was little-known even in her neighborhood let alone across Pakistan. But by the time she returned in mid-February with a gold medal in the 100-meter sprint had had already became a celebrity. “It was the most joyful moment in my life,” a jubilant Naseem, 23, told in an exclusive interview. “Tears flew down my cheeks, and I bowed to Allah right there.” Naseem won the 100-meter sprint competition in the 2010 South Asian Games, setting a new South Asian record with 11.81 seconds. She did not just make history as the fastest woman in South Asia, but became the first ever woman gold medalist in the 62-year history of Pakistan. “I






thankful to Allah. It is just because of His grace and the prayers of my parents, that I have achieved this all,” said an emotional Naseem. A huge crowd waving national flags and chanting slogans such as “long live Naseem Hameed” and “Welcome sprint queen” awaited her arrival for hours outside the Quad-IAzam International airport. The huge rally took hours to reach her 80yard one-room house in a low-income area of Karachi, where her laborer father, mother and other family members were anxiously awaiting. President Asif Zardari hosted a reception in her honor and awarded her Rs one million (12000 dollars). Cash rewards worth million of rupees and a house have also been announced by the provincial government, state-owned corporations, private businessmen and the army, which she represents in

national events.

the color of the national flag.

“It is only because of Allah that I have got wealth and fame together.”

“Even if it is a disadvantage, which I believe is not, I don’t care about that. My values and culture are more important than anything else.”

Model Naseem has become an inspiration, especially that female athletes have

never performed so well in international events. She also became a model after having won the prestigious title while wearing a full dress. “Dress is not at all an issue for me,” she said confidently. The sprint queen ran the 100meter race wearing green shirt and white trouser, matching

UK’s Jewish Chronicle editor says: extra-judicial murder is kosher By Salaheddin Ahmad Redress Information & Analysis “In early 2009 Mr Alderman argued that according to Jewish religious law, it was “entirely legitimate to kill” every Palestinian in Gaza who voted for Hamas.” “Doubts have begun to resurface regarding the attitude of the Jewish Chronicle, Britain’s top Zionist newspaper and Israeli mouthpiece, towards justice and the rule of law after its editor, Stephen Pollard, publicly condoned extra-judicial murder.” “Just imagine what would have happened if a British Muslim columnist said that it was fine to kill Israelis who voted for a government that slaughters Palestinian civilians. The whole country, from Westminster to the media, from the tabloids to the so-called “quality papers” to the BBC and ITN, would be up in arms with condemnations…” In response to an email in which a reader of the Jewish Chronicle asked whether the newspaper considered “extra-judicial murder by Israel or any other state as acceptable in any way”, Mr Pollard simply replied “yes”. The Jewish Chronicle is currently spearheading a campaign by Israel’s stooges and agents of influence to change UK law so that suspected Israeli war criminals can travel to Britain without fear of prosecution under universal jurisdiction. Commenting on Mr Pollard’s support for extra-judicial murder, Chris Doyle, the director of the Council for Arab-British Understanding, said: Editors of newspapers have a major responsibility not to promote violations of law and in particular murder. Pollard’s support for murder is a disgrace and calls into serious question his standing as a serious journalist and editor. This is not the first time in which Stephen Pollard’s ethics have come under the spotlight. In December 2009, Redress Information & Analysis published an article in which a number of whistleblowers questioned the commitment of some of Britain’s top Jewish institutions, including the Jewish Chronicle, to basic universal principles of human rights and common decency. The whistleblower from the Jewish Chronicle was especially scathing about Stephen Pollard, questioning his judgement and noting that the Jewish Chronicle editor’s

choice of commentators and columnists put his sense of ethics in serious doubt. In an interview with Redress Information & Analysis Editor Nureddin Sabir, the whistleblower said: Take a look at some of our commentators and columnists. The average British reader would take one glance and say “What a rogues gallery!” You have Tzipi Livni, that broken record Melanie Phillips and, worse of all, Geoffrey Alderman. For God’ sake, Geoffrey Alderman is one of our regular columnist, believe it or not! For a newspaper that’s struggling to keep its readers, the choice of Geoffrey Alderman is a damn strange one, but that’s Stephen Pollard for you. In early 2009 Mr Alderman argued that according to Jewish religious law, it was “entirely legitimate to kill” every Palestinian in Gaza who voted for Hamas.

back,” asserted Naseem, who has so far won 13 gold medals and hundreds of shields and trophies in different events. Naseem gives all credit to her parents.

Nearly 2000 athletes from 8 countries competed in 23 different sports in the major multisport event that took place from January 29 to February 8 in Bangladesh.

“My father is a laborer with asthma. He worked so hard for us, and my mother equally supported him by making paper envelopes at home. It’s they who should actually be credited for whatever I am,” the Muslim girl said humbly.

India won the sports gala with 175 medals, including 90 gold medals, followed by Pakistan and host Bangladesh.

“My relatives were not happy with my participation in sports. They objected many times asking my father to stop me. But he never did that.”

Naseem says she participated in her first-ever sprint competition when she was in Grade 6. “I won that race. My teacher was startled at my speed because I beat many girls much older than me. She selected me for the school team to participate in the inter-city schools event,” she recalled. “After that I never looked

Naseem plans to take her parents to hajj as a small token of appreciation. “It has always been my dream to send my parents for Hajj. Allah has listened to me,” she added jubilantly. “I have various plans to utilize this money, but my top most priority is to go to the Holy Land Inshaullah this year to perform Hajj. I believe this would be the best way to thank Allah.”

Indonesian clerics mull motorcycle helmet fatwa By IRWAN FIRDAUS Associated Press JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Indonesia’s leading clerics are considering a religious edict against riding a motorbike without a crash helmet to promote safety on the chaotic and deadly roads of the world’s most populous Muslim country. Such a fatwa would not carry a penalty for those who ignore

Safety Association, motorbike riders, government regulators and medical professionals, council general secretary Ichwan Sam said. ``As Islamic people, we have to protect our religion, our body and soul, our mind, our ancestry and our wealth,’’ Sam said. ``Wearing a helmet when riding a motorbike is included in the protection of our body and soul.’’ According




For our whistleblower, the fact that Mr Alderman was still a regular columnist for the newspaper after making these comments was “scandalous and outrageous, morally and politically”. The whistleblower said: Geoffrey Alderman spits out stuff that not even the British National Party, Combat-18 and the Ku Klux Klan would dare say these days. Just imagine what would have happened if a British Muslim columnist said that it was fine to kill Israelis who voted for a government that slaughters Palestinian civilians. The whole country, from Westminster to the media, from the tabloids to the so-called “quality papers” to the BBC and ITN, would be up in arms with condemnations day and night, day after day for weeks on end. Politicians and others would be calling for prosecutions, Stephen Pollard would be rushing from one TV studio to another bellowing “anti-Semitism”. But here we go, Alderman in effect condoning the murder of innocent civilians and he still writes for the Jewish Chronicle. What a way to appeal to the broader public! What morality! Given Stephen Pollard’s latest public support for extra-judicial murder, the choice of suspected war criminal Tzipi Livni and murder apologist Geoffrey Alderman as Jewish Chromicle columnists does not seem all that strange. You can contact Stephen Pollard and share with him your thoughts at stephenpollard@

it, but advocates said Sunday making road safety a moral issue could be more effective than the law. Helmets have been compulsory in Indonesia since 1988, but a 2005 government study found that up to 30 percent of riders in cities still did not wear one. Even fewer riders wear them in rural areas. The Ulema Council, an influential board of Islamic clerics, will consider issuing the edict after consulting the Road

association, the equivalents of 23 of the 32 people who die each day in traffic accidents in Indonesia are motorbike riders. Upgrading of roads, particularly in cities such as Jakarta, is not keeping pace with the growth in motorbike ownership. Edo Rusiyanto, a newspaper editor and association member, said it had recommended the fatwa in the hope that bikers in this nation of 235 million people who do not heed the safety pleas of lawmakers would listen to their religious leaders instead.

MARCH 2010 13 INTERNATIONAL Iran becoming military Ancient Arabic inscription found in Jerusalem dictatorship



By ROBERT BURNS DOHA, Qatar (AP) _ U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said that Iran is becoming a military dictatorship, a new U.S. accusation in the midst of rising tensions with Iran over its nuclear ambitions and crack down on anti-government protesters. Speaking to Arab students at Carnegie Mellon’s Doha campus, Clinton said Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps appears to have gained so much power that it effectively is supplanting the government. ``Iran is moving toward a military dictatorship,’’ she said. ``That is our view.’’ The U.S. Treasury Department announced that it was freezing the assets in U.S. jurisdictions of a Revolutionary Guard general and four subsidiaries of a previously penalized construction firm he runs because of their alleged involvement in producing and spreading weapons of mass destruction. The Revolutionary Guard has long been a pillar of Iran’s regime as a force separate from the ordinary armed forces. The Guard now has a hand in every critical area including missile development, oil resources, dam building, road construction, telecommunications and nuclear technology. It also has absorbed the paramilitary Basij as a full-fledged part of its command structure _ giving the militia greater funding and a stronger presence in Iran’s internal politics. In her Doha appearance, Clinton also said she foresees a possible breakthrough soon in stalled peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

``I’m hopeful that this year will see the commencement of serious negotiations that will cover every issue that is outstanding,’’ she said, adding that ``everyone is anticipating’’ progress after more than a year of impasse between the negotiating parties. The peace talks broke down in late 2008 with Israel’s incursion into Gaza, which had launched rocket attacks on Israeli targets. Clinton spoke in an interview with the Al-Jazeera TV network before a live audience of mostly Arab students at Carnegie Mellon’s Doha campus. In remarks in the Qatari capital, Clinton said she and the president are disappointed that the administration’s efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks had failed thus far. A Carnegie Mellon audience member who identified himself as an Iranian expatriate asked Clinton if the U.S. would be present in Iraq if Iraq had no oil resources. She said the U.S. wants a normal relationship with the Iraqi government, regardless of its natural resources. ``When we leave Iraq, as has been agreed to, with our military _ and we’re on schedule to do that _ we will hopefully has a relationship with Iraq as we have with any other country,’’ she said. On Sunday she said the number of U.S. troops in Iraq had fallen this month below 100,000 and that the United States is on track to have all combat troops out of the country by the end of summer. Reflecting the extent of concern in the Persian Gulf region about a U.S. confrontation with Iran, another member of the audience asked Clinton about the outlook for improving relations with Tehran. Clinton reiterated the Obama’s

administration view that Iran has violated its international obligation to use nuclear technology only for peaceful purposes. And she regretted that Iran has not accepted U.S. offers of nuclear negotiations. ``Unfortunately, there has not been the kind of response that we had hope for from the Iranian leadership,’’ she said. Clinton makes a point of raising the topic of women and girls’ rights whenever she travels abroad. In a speech to a forum on U.S.-Muslim relations, she stressed it in the context of U.S. support for nations seeking to build democratic institutions. ``As nations strive to build and strengthen governments that reflect the will of their people, grounded in their own traditions, they can count on the United States to be their partner,’’ she said. ``But the will of the people means the will of all the people, men and women. Women’s rights are an issue of singular importance to me personally and as secretary of state.’’ She also cited the issue of violence against women, without mentioning any specific country. ``Even today, in 2010, women are still targets of violence,’’ she said Sunday. ``And all too often, religion might be used to justify it. But there is never a justification for violence against women. It is not cultural. It is criminal. And it is up to religious leaders to take a stand for women, to call for an end to honor killings, child marriages, domestic and genderbased violence.’’ Later Monday, Clinton was flying to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for a meeting with King Abdullah and a session with Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal.

French city hall duels halal-only burger venture By VIRGINIE MAECKER

LILLE, France (AP) _ A French town filed a legal complaint accusing a branch of a mainstream fast food chain of discrimination because it only serves burgers prepared according to Islamic dietary law.

including many families with roots in former colonies in North Africa. There are many restaurants in France that serve halal-only fare, especially in neighborhoods with significant Muslim populations. Vandierendonck said he did not object to the halal option, simply to the fact that there was no other.

The mayor of the northern town of Roubaix, Rene Vandierendonck, told The Associated Press that he wants the Quick burger restaurant to ``propose a new, diversified’’ menu that satisfies a broader clientele.

``It's very good that a restaurant like Quick offers halal (meat), but why get rid of what there is everywhere else? The fact that they do not offer other choices to non-Muslim clients is not acceptable.’’

Quick is a Belgium-based chain popular in Europe that offers low-priced hamburgers, french fries and other standard fast-food fare. There are Quick restaurants in towns all over France.

Halal, meaning ``lawful’’ or ``permissible’’ in Arabic, is a term for food that is prepared according to Islamic dietary law. Animals must be slaughtered following Quranic guidelines and in the name of Allah.

Associated Press Writer

The Quick restaurant in Roubaix is among seven in France that since November have been serving halal-only food. Burgers once served with bacon now come with smoked beef instead of pork. The company has said the goal of the halal-only restaurants is ``to validate the commercial interest and technical feasibility of introducing such a selection of products based on halal meat.’’ France largest

has Western Europe’s Muslim population,

The city of Roubaix filed a discrimination complaint with the regional court in nearby Lille. Quick officials did not immediately comment on the complaint, and it was unclear when a court might decide whether or not to hear it. The case appears to have touched a nerve because Quick is a mainstream chain frequented by French consumers across the country across the ethnic and religious spectrum.

Associated Press JERUSALEM (AP) _ A home renovation in Jerusalem’s Old City has yielded a rare Arabic inscription offering insight into the city’s history under Muslim rule, Israeli archaeologists said. The fragment of a 1,100year-old plaque is thought to have been made by an army veteran to express his thanks for a land grant from the Caliph al-Muqtadir, whom the inscription calls ``Emir of the Faithful.’’ Dating from a time when Jerusalem was ruled from Baghdad by the Abbasid empire, the plaque shows how rulers rewarded their troops and ensured their loyalty, archaeologists said.

found approximately 5 feet (1.5 meters) beneath the floor of a home in the Old City’s Jewish Quarter. The house’s owner planned a renovation and _ as required by law _ brought archaeologists to carry out a salvage dig meant to prevent harm to valuable antiquities. The plaque has been removed from the site and is now in the hands of Israel’s Antiquities Authority. The writing was deciphered by Hebrew University professor Moshe Sharon, who traced it to 910, during the early part of al-Muqtadir’s 24-year rule. The finding will help scholars better understand 10thcentury Jerusalem, populated by Muslims, Christians and Jews, and the methods used by Muslim rulers to solidify their control.

The Abbasids conquered Jerusalem after numerous wars with the Fatimid empire in Egypt. The Abbasid caliphs valued Jerusalem as an Islamic holy site. ``The caliph probably granted estates as part of his effort to strengthen his hold over the territories within his control, including Jerusalem, just as other rulers did in different periods,'' said excavation director Annette Nagar. The white marble plaque measures four inches by four inches (10 x 10 centimeters) and was

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MARCH 2010

West Bank shrines on Israeli heritage list By IAN DEITCH Associated Press Writer

JERUSALEM (AP) _ Israel is adding two key West Bank holy shrines to its list of national heritage sites, the prime minister said, staking a claim that angered Palestinians, who want Israel out of the West Bank. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, addressing a session of his Cabinet at a heritage site in the Israeli Galilee, said the two sites were late additions to the list, reflecting pressure from settlers and other nationalists to widen the heritage category to include Old Testament sites in the West Bank. One of the sites, in the city of Hebron, has been a flashpoint for decades. Jews call it the Cave of the Patriarchs, where the Bible says the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were buried along with three of their wives.

north of Hebron. Israel’s West Bank separation barrier juts into Bethlehem to put the site under Israeli control. The 30-foot (8-meter) high concrete wall is a constant irritant to Palestinians there, who reject Israel’s claims that the barrier is meant to keep out attackers and consider it a land grab.

technological strength,’’ Netanyahu said. ``It is anchored first and foremost in our national and emotional legacy.’’ Palestinian Authority spokesman Ghassan Khatib condemned the decision and warned it could take the IsraelPalestinian conflict in a dangerous direction. ``We believe that this particular violation is very dangerous because it might add to the religious nature of the conflict,’’ Khatib said. Palestinians claim the West Bank as part of their future state.

Altogether, about 150 sites are on the national heritage list. Netanyahu convened his Cabinet at Tel Hai, location of a legendary 1920 battle between early Jewish settlers and

Netanyahu spokesman Mark Regev said the list was not meant to draw borders. ``The purpose of the list ... is to single out sites that are of great importance to the Jewish people,’’ he said.

Muslims call it the al-Ibrahimi mosque, reflecting the fact that Abraham is considered the father of both Judaism and Islam.

Israeli settlers and their backers, who oppose giving up control of any of the West Bank, were pleased with the move and said they would press for additional biblical sites to be added to the list.

Hebron is a focus of violence because it is the only place in the West Bank where Jews live among Palestinians. About 500 Israeli settlers, some of them extremists, live in enclaves near the disputed holy site, guarded by Israeli soldiers who control part of the city where about 170,000 Palestinians live. The other new heritage site is the traditional tomb of the biblical Rachel on the outskirts of Bethlehem, about 12 miles (20 kilometers)

Arieh Eldad, a lawmaker from the hardline National Union party, toured the Hebron site Sunday. ``There is no Israeli heritage without the Bible, there is no Zionism without the Bible,’’ Eldad told Israel Radio. ``This is the real birthplace of the Jewish people, here it all began.’’

Arab attackers. The prime minister, who angered settlers by agreeing under U.S. pressure to slow settlement construction, said the two West Bank sites must be preserved because they show Israel’s ancient ties to the land. ``Our existence here doesn’t just depend on the might of the military or our economic and




Also in the West Bank, about 50 Jewish settlers stormed into the town of Jericho in the Jordan River valley late Sunday, the Israeli military said. Media reports said the settlers planned to barricade themselves inside an ancient synagogue. The military said Israeli soldiers were being sent to the area, though it is under Palestinian control.

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What to Do After Saying “I Do” By Umm Junayd If you are a new bride or going to wed anytime soon, this is a special serving of down-to-earth advice for you. Be His Friend

relieve tensions, but also avert the explosion situation where “everything comes out”. Know Him Better Than His Mother Get to know your husband inside out, and it will be a breeze when it comes to

Marriage is not a slave and master relationship; it’s one with two team players who are able to get through just about anything together. The relationship between you and your husband should transcend the boundaries of spouses and extend to the level of friendship.

Keep That Look!

working out what he likes and dislikes.

On your wedding day (and night) and during your “honeymoon period” your husband is dazzled by your beauty and grace, but these are not the only times to keep yourself looking pristinely gorgeous.

Not only will it strengthen your bond, but he will also feel secure knowing that his beloved wife is someone who understands him and recognizes his needs. It will also play in your favor when trying to determine when it’s best to sweet talk him.

Worse still, when children enter the scene, all the make-up, perfumes, and dresses are replaced with nappy wipes, baby oil, and tracksuits. Stop! Don’t fall victim to the “I’m a mother and haven’t got time” excuse. Keep that make-up, perfume, and dress well within hand’s reach because you can still look spectacular, no matter how long you have been married. Whether you are a slender or a voluptuous woman, try to look graceful and beautiful, simply because you are. Compromise and Celebrate There’s no doubt that there will always be times when either of you simply have to be stubborn to get your way, but don’t let it be you. While stubbornness canvsometimes work in your favor, it can also crush a beautiful bond; strive to meet in the middle and learn to bite your tongue, swallow your pride, and compromise. It really can ease a sticky situation, and could be a cause to celebrate. Open the Door of Understanding The door of understanding may sometimes be difficult to unlock, but you hold aspecial key: that of communication. Keeping things bottled up never does any good, and you may end up feeling like a Cola bottle that keeps getting shaken… what ends up happening? A volcanic explosion! Speaking to your husband in a mature and measured way about issues that are bothering you, not only

MARCH 2010

By Nesima Aberra

“We thought a lot about what our goals for the club were going to be at a spiritual, social and active level before we leaked the word about.”

Muslim Voice It’s a Tuesday evening and a group of around twenty Muslim girls are huddled in the funerary room at the Islamic Community Center in Tempe as Veneranda Sanchez, a teacher at the PMIS School, demonstrates how to wash and prepare a dead body for services using a plastic doll. She covers the doll’s body with towels before washing in order to cover her awrah, following set Islamic guidelines. “You don’t know when you’re going to die, so always be prepared,” she says.

You should be able to open up fully to one another, laugh together, cry together, and have a whole heap of fun.

It is all too common that after a couple of months into a marriage, women begin to forget how to groom themselves, wear nice clothes, and smell like a thousand roses.

15 Muslim Girls are “Precious Jewels” in the Community


Forget the World During the hustle and bustle of life, work and family, there’s often little room for”us-time”. Something as simple as strolls in the park, a day trip to the zoo, or a weekend at the beach can be fantastic and you get to know one another better. So forget the world and bask in one another’s company. Have Time for You While tending to your new family may be incredibly rewarding, it can also take its toll on you, and cause you to forget about yourself. Vow to yourself, that each and every day you will take a step — whether large or small — devoted to developing as a person. Whether it involves working on your memorization of the Quran, reading a book, or pampering yourself, even getting your hair done can be intensively gratifying. Be a True Team in Strengthening Your Religion Acts of worship done with your husband can be so fulfilling. Something as simple as praying obligatory prayers together if he can’t make it to the mosque, increases your bond of union and can be truly spiritually rewarding. Studying or seeking knowledge alone can be isolating, but having a husband who can teach you and also be taught is a blessing and not only draws you closer spiritually, but also allows you to grow in faith together. Focusing on the negative aspects of a marriage is all too easy, but loving, understanding, communicating, and compromising can bring endless bliss to any husband-wife relationship. Abandon the downbeat facets, and enjoy your union.

The girls look on and ask question during the process, even participating by spraying water with the nozzle and smelling the kafoor and cedar oil used to clean the body. Most people would be uneasy about learning the rituals of handling a dead body, but it is something every Muslim will undoubtedly have to experience. These kinds of common sense skills are part of what these Muslim girls want to learn more about. Precious Jewels, the name of the Muslim girls’ group, started last year in order to provide a fun way to learn about Islam and maintain a bond of sisterhood. Every Tuesday, the girls gather at ICC to have discussions, go on outings, learn dua’s and listen to guest speakers—all to increase their Islamic knowledge and appreciation. According to member Dalal Jawad, the name’s significance relates to Muslim girls being precious and their modesty being a jewel. Rawa Awad, one of the founding members, said she and a few other girls found a void in the community for a group for high school to post-graduate women and decided to start the club after several months of planning.

The schedule for the meetings is created in advance and organized into various themes and topics. In the past, the Precious Jewels have learned about the 99 names of Allah, staying healthy in Ramadan and even had fiqh questions answered by the masjid’s sheikh and his wife. This month’s focus was on practical issues, hence the lesson on preparing the body for burial. For leisure activities, the girls have gone out for frozen yogurt, rock climbing and are planning to have a self-defense lesson. Their meetings typically begin with a riddle posted in the first five minutes and then taken down, in order to encourage punctuality. Gift cards and candy are given out to the winners. The frequency of the meetings is no doubt a challenge to keep up with for many of the members balancing school and work, but Awad said despite changing schedules, she finds a consistent group of twenty girls attend each time. The impact of the club on member Samira Asad’s life motivates her to continue going to the meetings. “Precious Jewels is more than a halaqa. It’s a time for us college age girls to get together to learn something new and have fun doing it. I’ve been going to PJs for over a year now and I’ve loved every minute of it. If I miss a week because of homework or other commitments, I really feel like something is missing; my week just isn’t the same. It’s a way for us to stay connected even with all of our crazy, hectic schedules. I am so blessed to be a part of it.” For valley Muslim girls interested in joining the group, contact to get on the Precious Jewels email list.


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Poetry by Local Young Talent DIVE The clear water sways from side to side. It makes me want to swim I hold my breath as I jump down, I soar and roar and make sounds. Everyone is looking at me, I feel like a clown! I dive into the ocean head above the rest, As I land in the water. I know I am blessed. For family, friends yes my teachers too, But most of all I am blessed to share this with you. AIR I am flying, gliding through out the air.

The breeze pushes back all my hair.

03/ 09

By Dana Saleh

Then I think “This was such a stupid dare!” But the wind feels so cool now I don’t really care. I sway side to side with a smile on my face, As I feel I am going at a 10,000 miles pace. I am getting ready to land on the earth, As I reach for my parachute string. I pull at it so hard, my fingers start to sting! It hurts real bad, I just want to land. Then my feet touch the ground, This is really grand! I hug my parents with great relief, This was a great experience beyond belief!



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MARCH 2010

Judgment Day: No Second Chance By Dr. Laurence B. Brown

“You never get a second chance to make a good first i mpression.” Old proverb True belief has a reward in the hereafter. Disbelief does too, but you don’t want it. Such has been the message of all the prophets — each and every one of them.

“Chosen People,” Christians claim “not to be perfect, just forgiven,” and Muslims believe that all who die in submission to the Creator are eligible for redemption.

as God, were upon the truth, right up until they rejected the final prophet (that is, Muhammad). Again, Jesus’ followers submitted to God, but only on their terms.

Those who followed the revelation and the prophet of their time will be successful, whereas those who forsook the revelation and the prophet of their day did so to the compromise of their souls.

And that’s not good enough. When called upon to honor the final revelation (the Quran) and the prophet who conveyed it (Muhammad), they rejected and fell into the same disobedience and disbelief as their Jewish cousins.

How can we justify an afterlife? Well, where else can the injustices of this life be rectified, if not in an afterlife? What we perceive to be injustices in this worldly life would be a poor reflection upon God’s sense of fairness, if these “injustices” aren’t offset by appropriate rewards and punishments in the hereafter.

According to Muslims, the religion of truth has always been Islam (that is, submission to the will of God), for that is what all prophets taught. However, the refinement of Islam is to be found in the final revelation and in the teachings of the final prophet. In revealing the final revelation, God warned that all preceding religions and revelation have been changed from original form. Hence, the only group that submits to God’s true religion in the present day is the Muslims.

Some of the worst of the worst enjoy some of the most luxurious lives. Meanwhile, some of the best of the best suffer terribly. For example, which prophet had an easy time of it? Which prophets lived pampered lives of splendor to match that of a mafia boss, drug lord, or tyrannical ruler, either of our time or of theirs? If we are to trust in the mercy and justice of our Creator, we cannot believe He restricts the rewards of piety and the punishments of transgression to this worldly life, for the inequities of life are clear. So there will be a Day of Judgment, we’ll all be there, and it will be a bad time to start thinking about changing our lives for the better. Because our lives will be, in a word, over. It’ll be too late. The record of our deeds will be done. And there’s no going back. Mankind will be sorted according to beliefs and deeds. The faithful will be vindicated, the disbelievers condemned, the transgressors (if not forgiven) punished according to the severity of their sins. Jews declare Paradise to be a birthright of the

However, those who die neither knowing of Islam nor willfully avoiding investigation, we can’t claim that they will go either to hell or heaven. Only God is the one to judge on that. According to Islam, the believing Jews were upon the truth right up until they rejected the prophets who followed (that is, John the Baptist and Jesus Christ), their teachings and, in the case of Jesus, the revelation he conveyed. In this manner, the Jews lived in submission to God not on His terms, but on their terms. When God sent prophets or revelations they didn’t like, they chose to remain upon the religion of their forefathers rather than upon the religion of God. In this manner, they fell into disobedience and disbelief. Similarly, Jesus’ followers who did not worship him

In this manner, if it can be imagined that there are Jews who died without having known of the prophets who followed and Christians who died unaware of Muhammad and Quran, their abode is a thing that only God decides. God will judge people according to their submission to the revelation to which they had been exposed during their lifetimes, and test their faith and obedience. Hence, the ignorant that die sincerely seeking the religion of truth have hope for salvation.

Balancing Home and Work Tips for Working Women

By Anisa Abeytia You can really fit a lot into a day, and I do not mean all the meaningless running around we tend to do. What I mean is all of those things that you only dream of accomplishing like memorizing Qur’an, learning Arabic, going back to school, starting your own business, spending time with your children, having a discussion with your husband, and cooking a nutritious meal. As incredible as it may sound, you can have all of this and not give up sleep. The key is time management. Part of that is setting your priorities as well as setting realistic goals. We all have various roles that we balance, and as more and more women set out for the work place, finding a balance becomes more difficult. Even women who do not have a job outside of the duties of home and family are also finding new challenges to manage their time effectively. I understand all of these challenges, because I face them myself everyday as a working, home schooling mother of four who went back to school to earn her second master’s degree. So here, I would like to share some of the tips that have worked for me and my clients to help balance work and home more effectively. Time Wasters The various duties we have at home and work consume a large part of our day. However, there are activities that take up a lot of our time and really are a waste of our time. The top time wasters are as follows. Lack of planning. It is true

that sometimes even the best of plans do not work out all the time, but it is better to have one. Without a plan, we do not know what we want, how to attain it, or what is important to us. Placing children in too many activities. This is like driving around all day. I was tutoring a little boy one summer, and the mother told me her son could not focus, and it was not very productive. She was also tired. It turned out that every day he had soccer and swimming practice and Qur’an class, and once a week he came to me for tutoring. Both the mother and the son were burning out. Yes, we do want to provide our children with many oppor tunities, but many times it is overkill, and the child does not learn to be consistent or to master anything. Having a lot of furniture. This can be the biggest time waster for women because of all the cleaning it can involve. Remember that, at the end, these things (clothes, dishes, bric-a-brac, furniture, etc.) will all need to be cleaned and kept in order. Keeping things simple will streamline cleaning and make it easier. Putting out fires. Due to procrastination and poor planning, this can be a major drain on energy and time. Surely, it is true that emergencies do come up, but when you are spending a large

part of your time putting out fires, take it as a sign that there needs to be better planning put in place. Lack of organization. Not to sound too like the T.V. host Martha Stuart, everything should have its place. When we can find things, and the rest of the family knows where things should go, everything runs smoother. You do not have to run out and buy

expensive storage units. Look around and see what you have first, and figure out how you want to plan your space. Dollarm stores and garage sales are places you can start with if you need to buy anything. The most important thing is to plan out and specify what the space will be used for. If this is not done, you will end up spending money than you really need. The smaller the space you have, the more challenging it can be, catalogues can provide plenty of ideas. It will take some time and effort, but there is no better feeling than stepping into a well-planned and organized space. This is

step one. Then there is the other part of being organized. Again, plan out your day, week, or month (you can decide what works best for you) and, above all, write it down. Something magical happens when something is written down (and I do not mean on a scrap tossed somewhere); the magic is that you usually do it. Telephone, internet, and television. Many people use them as their downtime, but this can be a potential problem when this is done too much because it is just a waste of time. People who spend too much time putting out fires usually end up just too tired for much anything else, so they swing from extreme activity to vegetation. This is the classic “crash and burn.” Not setting realistic goals. We all have that dream goal or even a small goal like to get more sleep. But as a goal, that is not very specific, nor does it tell you how, when, or how much, so it will probably not happen. Setting realistic goals can be difficult and I will give you some tips later. Not knowing your priorities. What is important to you? Why is it important? I spend a lot of time with my clients on setting goals and priorities, they are that important. You want to arrange your time so that you do what is most important first. Cleaning the toilet is not a top priority, but

it usually gets done before all the “important things.” Once you get more organized, the toilet bowl will not be a fire waiting to be put out. It will get cleaned on schedule, on its day so you can do things like learn Arabic or some other meaningful activity. Procrastination. Do it; do it now or real soon. The busier you are, the least likely you will be able to get away with procrastination. You will end up putting out fires every week. Lack of downtime or alone time. Everyone needs time to recharge and relax. Some ways of relaxation are better than others, but the more active you are, the more important this will be. I find that people who are extremely active like to exercise as a way to relax, but this can be overdone and can even be unhealthy. Your activity level will determine the amount of time you spend exercising. The concept of a gym is new, before people got their exercise during their daily routine. This is not to say “do not exercise”; I am saying that if you already spend most of your day running around, a 15–20 minute walk three times a week might be the kind of exercise that will be most stress-reducing. Reading a book, taking a bath, sharing a good meal with friends are also other activities that you might enjoy. When we do not allow the body and mind to rest, we run the risk of burning out and becoming ill. Doing this regularly will not only help you be more productive, but it is the best preventative medicine.


MARCH 2010



Sister Hana is a Certified Counselor from Arizona State University. She is a Muslim therapist who is able to provide guidance and support to my fellow Muslim brothers and sisters in an Islamic and therapeutic way. She has experience in a large range of concerns including depression, anxiety, identity crisis, relationships, life skills, coping skills, anger management, and trauma. Inshallah with this column she will be able to provide you with confidentiality and help to any concern you may have. Please feel free to write to us and anticipate my reply in the monthly edition of Muslim Voice to Dear Sister Hana, Dear sis and salaam, I understand that this might be to heavy for the newspaper....If you don’t want to print it that is up to you. And a quick question, I am looking for an affordable therapist, do you know of any? Dear Sister Hana, I am a young woman and happily married. My husband and I are of different cultures, and I know he is not completely comfortable with my mental health. I suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and social anxiety. It is very very hard for me to explain how I feel mentally to him. Why I will get angry sometimes, why I have a hard time around people, and why sexually I can not always be there. I just cannot find the words. Could you please help me find the words?

I have been having an ongoing situation with my husband. We are both Arab Muslims, I was born here and he was born in the Middle East. We used to get along so much better when we first got married but recently it has not been the case. He is always irritated, does not help me around the house and does not help with our two year old daughter. He is always asking me to stop nagging to him even though I don’t feel like I am, and seems to be really annoyed from being at home. He has been spending a lot of time out of the house and that makes me feel really bad. I don’t understand what I am doing that is so wrong as he tells me, but if there is anything I can do to make this situation better I would like to know. Any advice? Dear sister,

To answer your question, based on the information that you provided, it sounds like you are suffering from some serious mental illnesses that would require professional help. I am really encouraging you to get professional help for yourself. Living with constant irritability and anxiety is a very unhealthy way to live in the long run. It will cause you many physical issues as well if this is continued without proper care. It is really important in this situation that you have the knowledge that you need to explain yourself to other people. If you are not able to explain and understand yourself why you are suffering with this, then it will be even harder to expect yourself to explain it to other people. So getting educated yourself is number one. Number two, it would be good to have very open communication with your husband, explain to him your triggers and things that make you upset so that he and you can be aware of what may make you angry or depressed or anxious. If you know your triggers it would be so much easier to avoid them and therefore, prevent negative situations. And finally please seek professional help. There is nothing wrong with needing professional help; there are medications and proper therapies that can be used that will help you with many of your symptoms if not all of them. You don’t have to suffer alone, please know that there is help out there and that you deserve that help. Thank you, I will pray for you.

Thank you for your courage in explaining your situation. Many couples go through hard times in their relationship. They say the first years are the hardest and they are. It seems as though with you, the first years were better because it was the time where you both had a higher tolerance of each other’s imperfections and when that died down and reality set in, the conflicts started. There are many things that you can try to be aware of, and make sure that you are doing, that can help this situation. Now, I don’t know the extent of the story, only what you have told me, so you may already be doing some of these suggestions, but here is what I suggest: When a husband asks his wife to not nag, it means the wife is nagging. Nagging is asking too many questions, arguing about everything and complaining about everything. If you feel like you may be doing any one of the following that may be what your husband is talking about. Wives have the duty to make their home the most pleasant and positive place for their families. It is also the responsibility of the husband, but mainly of the wife. If the husband comes home after a long day of work to a complaining wife, then of course he won’t want to come home. It is our duty in front of Allah to be there for our husbands, to make our homes clean and safe (of conflict and criticism) and to show them appreciation and love. All that is required of you is not physical things, its just verbal acknowledgment of his hard work, and respect for his quiet and relaxing time. That does not mean that you should not talk to him when he comes home or that he should not help you, but everything in moderation is good. If he wants to, then good, and if he is too tired, then leave him alone. Wouldn’t you want to be left alone when you are tired from working all day? I don’t know if you are an employed mother, but if you are not, you have to understand that working outside the house is just as tiring if not more than working inside the house. So please take that into consideration. When the husband comes home and is immediately bombarded with orders and commands, his home life will become unpleasant and this will directly affect the relationship and the whole dynamic of the family. The best way to go about this is to be respectful towards each other’s feelings, time and requests. I hope this helped. Good luck to you.



Sister Hana,

Sister Hana

Dear Sister, Thank you so much for your inquiry. There is no question too heavy for the newspaper, so please feel free to ask me anything you want. There are many behavioral health therapists in the area, all you have to do is call the number of your insurance and it will direct you to the providers that take your insurance. If you do not have insurance, you can look it up online; however, I am unable to make any recommendations at this time.

Exercising During Pregnancy By Yousra Hamdy Freelance Writer - USA Most pregnant women concern about their body changes during pregnancy. Returning to normal body shape after giving birth is a constant worrying thought. Many studies recommend exercise during pregnancy because of its good physical and psychological effects for on the pregnant women. The main benefits of exercising during pregnancy are having good posture and strong muscles. (IOL) talked to Laura Wegener, Master of Science in physical therapy, St. Elizabeth central Medical Center, Physical and Occupational Therapy Departments, USA. Wegner tells IOL, “As your body changes during pregnancy, it is important to work on your posture. You need to focus on a good upright position — not letting your shoulders droop forward. As you gain weight, you want to make sure your legs get stronger to support this extra load.” Good posture is important to maintain a healthy pregnancy and to decrease back and neck pain. Exercise helps woman’s muscles (e.g., pelvic, vaginal, uterus, abdominal, and back muscles) to be more flexible and strong, reducing joints and muscles’ pain complaints. Exercising daily also enhances the well-being feeling as it decreases pregnancy problems, such as aches, fatigue, constipation, gestational diabetes, and gaining excess weight. This is confirmed by Wegener, as she says: “It helps women have more energy, less discomfort, and the recovery of post partum is faster,” she adds, “it also makes the weight you gain during pregnancy isn’t usually as much , which is good for most women.” Wegener also talked about how exercise makes the labor easier and faster: “Some studies suggest that for exercisers, there may be less pain during labor. While that may not be accurate, the recovery from labor and delivery is faster and easier if you have been exercising.” Exercise is not only good for the mothers; it is good also for the fetus, as exercises reactivate the blood circulation in the body, which helps regularly the transfer of nutrition for the fetus regularly through the placenta. General Guidelines Check with your physician before beginning any prenatal exercise program. Specially, if you have one of the following conditions: Heart problems, asthma ,

hypertension, excess weight problems, muscle or joint problems, history of premature labors, miscarriages, or incompetent cervix, vaginal bleeding, or placental problems. “30-60 minutes per day (depends on your fitness level) is what we want everyone to do. During pregnancy, you don’t want to work quite as hard. So, you should be able to continue your regular pre-pregnant activity level. If you are starting, start slowly and progress gradually. You don’t want to get quite as breathless or work to fatigue. You have to drink more water, and make sure you don’t overheat, especially during summer,” said Wegener. Safe Prenatal Exercises You can almost do any exercise, if you rightly modify it. You should be careful, and not overdo it. “Walking, swimming, and aerobics are safe exercises for a pregnant woman or anything that is not real high impact.” These are the safest exercises suggested by Weneger for a pregnant woman. If your pregnancy is considered high-risk you may not be able to exercise very much. But with a normal, low-risk pregnancy, you can safely exercise throughout the pregnancy. - Walking, swimming, aerobics, stationary cycling, and yoga are the most recommended exercises for pregnant women, because they are safe and easy to do throughout all nine months of pregnancy. Also, yoga, dancing, and stretching exercises are good ones to ease tension and keep you flexible and strong. Kegel exercises are very important exercises that strengthen your pelvic floor muscles (the muscles of the urethra, bladder, uterus, and rectum) and vaginal muscles. It may help to treat urinary stress incontinence problem, hemorrhoids, and accelerate healing of tearing stitches after childbirth. To do Kegel exercises, try to hold your pelvic muscles (the exercise simulates trying to stop urinating or stop passing gas) for few seconds (3–10 seconds), and then relax for 3–10 seconds three times a day. Don’t make it a habit to do Kegel exercises while emptying your bladder. Praying is a perfect way for Muslim pregnant women to exercise. It consists of four positions, which are very helpful to back muscles and help reduce back pain. Wegener says, “Sujud (prostration) in the Muslim Praying is similar or close to yoga pose or child pose, which we use frequently for people with back pain and during our exercise class for expectant mothers, (Motion for Moms). If you have always done an activity, then doing it during pregnancy is usually fine. If you start having back pain, then of course, you would want to stop the activity.” “You can lift weights while you are pregnant, but don’t do a lot of deep squat with heavy weights,” Wegener

advised. “One of the most important things you have to be careful with is to not to hold your breath while lifting weights. It might be the best time to start, you need to start with low weights, 3 or 5-10 pounds, that would be fine, but don’t do really heavy lifting.” Activities to Avoid According to Wegener, you shouldn’t play contact group sports like (e.g., basketball, baseball, football, soccer) or anything that can get you hit or knocked to the ground. Water skiing, snow skiing, high-risk sports, such as scuba diving, horse-riding, running, and riding bikes should be avoided as well. Jerky, jarring, extreme or rapid leg lifts, twisting movements, or quick directional changes may be dangerous because the hormones released during pregnancy make ligaments and joints lax for facilitating labor, so they are more susceptible to injuries. Avoid any exercise done while lying flat on your back after the first trimester; “After 20 weeks, you are not supposed to do any exercise flat on your back. That is one of the precautions from American Congress of Obstetric and Gynecologists (ACOG),” Wegener said. ACOG put a list of signs that exercising pregnant women should pay attention to and check with a physician if any of them has developed: • Vaginal bleeding • Dizziness • Increased shortness of breath • Chest pain • Headache • Muscle weakness • Calf pain or swelling • Uterine contractions • Decreased fetal movement• Fluid leaking from the vagina Post-partum Exercise Exercise after giving birth is very important to return to pre-pregnancy shape quickly. Wegener says that after giving birth, a woman can start walking and moving again as soon as she feels she can, and by six weeks usually most women can start a regular exercise. In case of having a C-section, resting for 8–12 weeks is recommended to allow the incision to completely heal. “For postpartum women, especially if you plan to nurse, you have to have lots of extra water,” Wegener said, “holding the baby during exercise can help you get stronger. Again, you have to start gradually and listen to your body to make sure you don’t overdo. If you do squats holding the baby, as the baby getting bigger, your muscles will have to work harder and get stronger.” Maintaining a regular exercise program throughout your pregnancy and after giving birth can help you stay healthy and feel better. Stay in contact with your physician all through the time and let them know of anything that might worry you.



MARCH 2010

The Bazaar Market Place To advertise in this section call for details 602-258-7770 • Minimum 3 months

Salam Market

Tempe 616 S. Forest Ave. Tempe, AZ 85281

Aziz INAYAT M. ALIKHAN, M.D. General Psychiatry


‫إﻧﺎﻳﺎت ﻋﻠﻲ ﺧﺎن‬

Next to Tempe Mosque





New Office Location By Nov.19th 07

Airport Business Center 441 South 48th St. Suite 102 Tempe, AZ 85281





4424 N. 19th Ave. Phoenix, AZ 85015 Tel: (602) 265-6970 Cell: (602) 503-9210 fax: (602) 265-6978


COME & CHECK OUT JULY SPECIALS Fri., Sat., Sun. 11-3 PM 18 items buffet

Halal Fresh Meat

‫دﻛﺘﻮر ﻋﻼج ﻧﻔﺴﻲ ﻋﺎم‬


Halal Meals

Aziz Food Store

04/ 08


Gilbert 1150 S. Gilbert Rd., Ste.# 104 Gilbert AZ 85296

Arabic & Quran Teacher

To advertise in this space

If you wish to speak Arabic, and learn Quran, please contact certified Arabic teacher certified as International Montessori Teacher, and if you need consultations or training for your special need child, autism, hyper, active, add, attention deficit disorder, retardation, call:



call 602-258-7770

QURAN TAJWEED HALAQA Office: 602-564-2824 Mobile: 602-410-4683

HASAN MAHMUD, Agent 13236 North 7th St. Suite 5 (Corner of Thunderbird & 7th St) Phoenix, AZ 85022 24- Hours Claims Reporting: 1-800-374-1111

as low as

Sister’s Free Quran Tajweed Halaqa Tudesay Mornings Chandler Alma School/Warner Sister Naeema 602 507 9934

MATRIMONIAL Arab American Citizen Established. Looking for broad minded woman. Please call 480-430-6248


Mediterranean Market & Deli


for (3*2 inch) size ad

‫ا ﻷ ﻣــﲑ ة‬

‫اﻛﺒﺮ اﻟﻤﺤﻼت اﻟﻌﺮﺑﻴﺔ واﻟﺸﺮﻗﻴﺔ ﻓﻲ أرﻳﺰوﻧﺎ‬ ‫ﻣﻦ أﻛﺒﺮ‬ ‫ﻣﻦ‬ ‫ارﻳﺰوﻧﺎ‬

Open 7 days a week

All meats are Zabiha Halal Open buffet on Fridays and Saturdays We cater for all occasions big or small



Arabic, Indo/Pak, and Persian products Store, Restaurant, Meat Market ALL IN One


Broadway 60

Quantities limited, prices subject to change at any time, we have the right to limit quantities. Photos may not be exact as products.


2620 W. Broadway Rd., Mesa, AZ Fax: 480-894-1544 Store Hours:Mon.-Fri. 9am-9pm • Sat. 10am-9pm • Sun. 10am-8pm


Phoenix Prayer Times

MARCH 2010

Tucson Prayer Times

March 2010 • Rabi Al-Awwal / Rabi Al-Akhar 1431 H

March 2010 • Rabi Al-Awwal / Rabi Al-Akhar 1431 H




Check our website for up to date information

1) Go South on Forest to University Drive. Turn right. 2) Go West on University to the I-10 highway. Take I-10 East. 3) Proceed on I-10 East (~12 Miles). Exit at Queen Creek Rd. (EXIT #164). 4) Turn right on route 347 South. Proceed for about 14 miles. 5) Turn right on route 238 West. Proceed for about 8.7 miles. 6) Turn right on unnamed/unpaved street after you see the street sign which reads “36 miles” and proceed to the cemetery.


Islamic Community Center of Phoenix:

Sunday at 9:45 am-1:20 pm.

Islamic Cultural Center:

Sunday at 10:00 am

Muslim Community Mosque:

Sunday at 10:00 am until 2:30 pm.

Masjid Omar

Saturday & Sunday from 10:00 am until 1:00 pm.

ICNEV Weekend Islamic School

Tel: (480) 346-2081Classes held on Sunday K thru’ grade 12 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

ACA Weekend School

Sunday 10:00 am-1:15 pm.

Sultan Education in Chandler

Saturdays & Sundays - children/adults 480-593-7066

Greenway Islamic Academy

Tajweed, Islamic Studies, & Arabic Language 602-565-0500

IN CASE OF DEATH • Call Sandy at Angel’s Burial, at 480-962-6435 • Total cost is $1,800.00

COLORING CONTEST February. Winner Anis Mullab Send your coloring to the Muslim Voice to enter the drawing for the best picture.

Hint: If the paper is too thin to color, make a Xerox copy then color it. Ages 3-12, please send a picture of yourself.



PHOENIX Arizona Cultural Academy 7810 S. 42nd Pl. • Phoenix 602-454-1222 Islamic Center of Arizona 9032 N. 9th St. • Phoenix

Islamic Center of N. Phoenix 13246 N. 23rd Ave. 85029 602-371-3440 Islamic Comnty Ctr of Phx 7516 N. Black Canyon Hwy. Phoenix • 602-249-0496 Muslim Community Mosque 1818 N. 32nd St. • Phoenix 602-306-4959 Masjid Al-Rahmah 2645 E. McDowell Rd. • Phoenix 602-275-5493 Masjid Muhammad Ibn Abdullah



Phone #:

March 2010

5648 N. 15th ave. Phoenix, AZ 85015 602-413-5279

Al Rasoul Mosque 5302 N. 35th Ave. • Phoenix 602-864-1817 PEORIA Greenway Islamic Center 6724 West Greenway • Peoria, AZ

SCOTTSDALE Islamic Center of N.E. Valley 12125 E. Via Linda • Scottsdale 480-612-4044

CHANDLER Masjid AsSalam 1071 N. Alma School Rd.• Chandler 480-250-7522

TEMPE Islamic Comnty Ctr of Tempe Islamic Center of East Valley 131 E. 6th Street • Tempe 425 N. Alma School Dr. • 480-894-6070 Chandler 602-388-9900 Masjid Al Mahdi 1016 S. River Dr. • Tempe LAVEEN 480-557-9699 Islamic Center of Laveen P.O. Box 1107 • Laveen Masjid Omar Bin Al-Khattab 602-361-4401 6225 S.McClintock • Tempe 480-775-6627 MARICOPA Masjid Bilal Ibn Rabah MESA 44240 W. Maricopa/ Masjid-el-Noor CasaGranda Hwy 55 N. Matlock • Mesa Maricopa Arizona 85139 480-644-0074 contact# (602)312-7913

35th Ave.


Serving the Valley for many years


Serving the European, Indo-Pak, Persian, Middle Eastern Comunities

Open 7 Days a Week Call us we love to help Hours: Mon-Sat 9am - 8pm Sun 11pm - 5pm


Large selection of Halal meats (chicken, goat, beef, lamb, quails etc.)

We will meet or beat any advertised price Speciales Halal Chicken $149/lb. Alwadee Foul 69¢ / can

• We cut and wrap your

meats for you

• Imported cheeses

• Imported olives

• Spices






MARCH 2010


CALL 602-258-7770

Fresh vegetables and Halal meats delivered weekly

• Pita breads


• Whole lamb & goat 5-10

3502 W. Greenway Rd. Phoenix, AZ






Quick Movers 1624 W. Thomas Rd. | Phoenix, AZ 85015 | Tel. 602-258-7770 | A division of Breek Publishing & Marketing



Now available 2010 edition for more information

602-258-7770 Now you can view the entire directory online at

Muslim Voice March 2010  

Muslim Voice March 2010

Muslim Voice March 2010  

Muslim Voice March 2010