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TERROR ALERTS

Issue: 31

October 2010

EXAGGERATED

A US terror alert issued about al-Qaida plots to attack targets in western Europe was politically motivated and not based on credible new information, senior Pakistani diplomats and European intelligence officials have told the Guardian newspaper. The non-specific US warning, which despite its vagueness led Britain, France and other countries to raise their overseas terror alert levels, was an attempt to justify a recent escalation in US drone and helicopter attacks inside Pakistan that have “set the country on fire”, said Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the high commissioner

to Britain. They were followed by a spate of what security and intelligence officials said were exaggerated claims in the British media, a US state department warning to American citizens to be vigilant when visiting Britain, France, and Germany, a “tit for tat” warning by France to its citizens visiting the UK, and alerts issued by the Swedish and Japanese governments. This also coincides with many alerts triggered in the UK including the Pope visit, when six cleaners were arrested and then later release without charge.

Shakir Ahmed, Director of Passion Islam Media commented “The UK Government are again threatening the stability of our communities by using the media as a platform to deliver their scare tactics. We can appreciate that there is a potential terrorist threat within the UK. Unfortunately the Government seem to lack the integrity to act in the best interests of the British people and are manipulating the situation to further their own agenda” This comes at a time when tensions will be high when the inquest of 7/7 is to start on Monday 11th October. Photo: EPA


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I LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

Passion Islam

the Passion

I October 2010

By Mark Steel

That’s right, it was all a Muslim plot

You might think that a plot to blow up the Pope would be news for a while. Popes don’t get blown up all that often, and this one’s enough of a celebrity that if he fell over drunk at the MTV awards with Kanye West it would be in the papers for a few days, so it’s strange that a plot to blow him up was only of interest for one day. The day after the front-page headline in the Express was “Muslim plot to blow up Pope”, and every paper had a similar headline. So it seemed there’d be a massive search and meticulous security, with even the Pope himself getting frisked and being told: “Sorry, your Holiness, you’re only allowed to carry 100mls of holy water on to the pulpit, though you can get another bottle after you’ve been through security.” But nothing more has been heard of it. Yet at the time it was so serious that, according to The Sun, the plotters, who were six London street cleaners, “had access to where the Pope is going to be”. Because through the trick of becoming street cleaners, the conniving terrorists would be able to gain entry into the secret area of London known as “the streets”. The Telegraph elaborated on this, informing us: “As street

cleaners they would have been able to move relatively freely through the crowds.” Unlike the crowds themselves, of course, who wouldn’t have been allowed to move at all but would all have been nailed to the pavement. And you can move much more relatively freely through a crowd when you’re pushing a huge portable dustbin with giant brushes, so they were clearly a terrifying menace. Luckily it’s unlikely that being a street cleaner would have been enough to get all that close to the Pope, unless they were hoping to shout: “Hang on, Pontiff, you can’t start Communion yet, there’s a crisp packet under your cassock, I’ll come and brush it away for you – KABOOM!” So what happened to the plot? The most likely answer is obviously that its sudden disappearance was due to a miracle. But sceptics might suggest another explanation. The Express told us: “The suspected plot was smashed.” Other papers agreed it had been “foiled”. But after the anti-terrorist squad raided the cleaning depot and arrested the six men, it turned out the only evidence against them was that someone had overheard them talking about the Pope, and they were released without charge.

So the plot was smashed and foiled through the tactic of never having existed in the first place. Maybe this is how the police can increase the number of crimes they solve, by foiling and smashing more such cases. They can announce the Armed Response Unit foiled a plot to kidnap Alan Titchmarsh by finding out no one wanted to kidnap him, and PC Whittaker smashed a plot to put a zebra in a wheelie bin when he worked out it wouldn’t fit, and they’ll be past their targets in a week. So there was no plot; nothing, just a mix-up between the activities “talking about” and “planning to blow up”. By Sunday night, the front-page declaration of Saturday’s press turned out to have been utter nonsense. You might expect, if you were naive, this would mean those papers having headlines such as “Oh my God, we told you a pile of bollocks – we’re so embarrassed.” But instead the Express mentioned the plot’s non-existence in one sentence at the bottom of page 9. Other papers probably went further, and just had a crossword clue: “Piece of ground that didn’t happen to Pope perhaps. Another part of the story suggests a reason for all the excitement. Five of the six arrested were said to be from Algeria which, as The Sun put it, “is a hot-bed of Islamic fundamentalism”. That’s half a continent written off to al-Qa’ida, and a few more people thinking: “You know what those Algerians are like, they blow up Popes.” So the work is done, and they’re free to make up the next one, such as “Muslims force Dalai Lama to harpoon a kitten” or something. It would have served them right if the Pope had to cancel the whole ceremony, having tripped over a dog-end as the road sweepers were all otherwise engaged. passionislam.com

Write to: Editor, Passion Islam, PO Box 159, Batley, West Yorkshire, WF17 1AD or email: info@passionislam.com - www.passionislam.com This Magazine contains Ayaat of the Qur’an and Hadith of the Prophet (SAW), please ensure you handle it with respect & care - Sukran -

Views expressed in the Passion column are of the contributers and not Necessarily of Passion Islam


Warsi accuses press of ‘anti-Islamic sentiment’

Passion Islam

I October 2010

NEWS

Chairman of the Conservative Party Lady Warsi has accused the British press of harbouring an “anti-Islamic sentiment”. Warsi, who combines her role chairmanship with that of minister-withoutportfolio, compared the Islamophobic press coverage of 2010 with antiSemitic views expressed in the early 20th century. “If you go back historically - [and] I was looking at some Evening Standard headlines, where there were things written about the British Jewish community less than 100 years ago - they have kind of replaced one with the other.” Referring to conservative columnist Peter Oborne, who has expressed the view, that anti-Islamic sentiment is the last socially acceptable form of bigotry in Britain today, Warsi - who is the first Muslim woman to sit in cabinet – told the News Statesman: “That’s absolutely true . . . If you have a pop at the British Muslim community in the media, then first of

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all it will sell a few papers; second, it doesn’t really matter; and third, it’s fair game.” Asked about the phone-hacking allegations against the Prime Minister’s director of communications, Andy Coulson, and the damage done to the party, Warsi issues a strong defence of the ex-News of the World editor: “I have a huge amount of time for Andy . . . my judgement of Andy is going to be based on my experience of him,” she said. “I know that when I went through quite a traumatic divorce, and the media fallout from it when my ex-husband went to the papers, Andy was there for me. “I am a deeply loyal person and I honestly believe that you judge people on how you find them. I can only judge Andy on what I have found from him and I have always found him to be a really supportive person.” By Oliver Luft - PG

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UK’s new torture guidance slammed

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LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

The Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) warns the UK government of legal action over new guidance on torture. The EHRC has addressed Prime Minister David Cameron and the heads of MI5 and MI6 in a letter, voicing serious concern over the new torture guidance which it labeled as ‘illegal’, the daily Morning Star reported. The commission said the guidance violates British and international law as well as the UN Convention on Torture. The guidance, published in July, sets out the procedures that officers must follow before they interview detainees held by authorities abroad, seek intelligence from detainees in the custody of foreign countries or solicit the detention of a person by a foreign country. It prohibits officers from continuing with any of those actions if they “know or believe” torture will take

Passion Islam

place. Officers, however, are free to proceed where they know there is a “serious risk of torture” as long as they can allay that risk through “caveats or assurances” or if they can consult ministers. EHRC said the government should either rethink the guidelines or face legal action. It insisted that “the new guidance left intelligence officers vulnerable to liability for crimes committed and condoned by others” and warned that “failure to amend it may result in judicial review proceedings being issued.” Legal experts hailed EHRC for addressing the government in its letter. “The current UK guidance on torture is indeed illegal,” said Reprieve executive director Clare Algar. “It contains a glaring loophole allowing government ministers to

I October 2010

authorize actions which expose prisoners to abuse, overriding even the most serious concerns of intelligence agents in the field.” “This is bound to lead to ministers signing off on acts that will get intelligence agents mixed up in torture.” The commission also voiced its concern in a letter sent to Sir Peter Gibson, who is due to head an inquiry into claims of British complicity in the torture of detainees held abroad.

International lawyers challenge legality of Iraq war

International lawyers have accused former prime minister Tony Blair’s government of undermining UN, bowing to US political pressure and damaging UK’s reputation by joining in the 2003 invasion of Iraq. In yet to be published evidence to the Iraq Inquiry, Blair’s government is criticised for relying upon self-serving arguments to justify its decision to support the US-led war. Ralph Zacklin, the British-born UN assistant secretary general for legal affairs at the time, told the inquiry that the UK’s attorney general, Lord

Goldsmith, failed to strike a proper balance ‘between the underlying political concerns of the government and respect for the rule of law.’ ‘The damage to the UK and credibility of the security council was very significant’, Zacklin said. He told the Guardian newspaper that it was “pretty clear [Goldsmith] was under a lot of pressure’. He also said that the way Jack Straw, then foreign secretary, dismissed the advice of his own lawyers, as evidenced already by the inquiry, was particularly shocking. A separate submission by a group of 23 lawyers said that the British government’s argument that it could rely on previous UN resolutions to invade was untenable. The submission, drawn up by Dapo Akande, lecturer in public international law at Oxford University,

among others, described the British government’s argument that the last pre-invasion UN resolution 1441 was enough to trigger military is ‘logically flawed’. The inquiry has received more than 30 responses to its request for submissions from international lawyers, although it has yet to make clear how or when the submissions will be published. Last month, the Liberal Democrat’s Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg confirmed in an interview with the Muslim News that his view is that the war was “illegal” and that he was not going to change his stance now that he is in office. In his first speech since becoming Labour leader, Ed Miliband admitted that his predecessor was “wrong” to take Britain into the war and said “we need to be honest about that.” IRNA


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I LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

Passion Islam

I October 2010

Apology over CCTV in Muslim areas

A police force apologised over a controversial CCTV scheme which saw more than 200 surveillance cameras installed in two largely Muslim neighbourhoods. West Midland Police Chief Constable Chris Sims said he was “deeply sorry” that his force got the balance between counter-terrorism and excessive intrusion into people’s lives “so wrong” The cameras, some of which were hidden, sparked anger from civil liberties campaigners and residents in Sparkbrook and Washwood Heath in Birmingham, where they were predominantly installed. Mr Sims said there were “serious shortcomings” in the force’s management of the scheme, named Project Champion. “I am sorry that we got such an important issue so wrong and deeply sorry that it has had such a negative impact on our communities,” he said. “My real regret is that Project Champion has undermined the

strong relationships that exist between West Midlands Police and our communities that have been built up over many years. “When I became Chief Constable in 2009 I put strengthening the trust and confidence of communities at the heart of the changes we would make to policing. “I am committed to continuing with these changes and rebuilding any trust we have lost.” He went on: “At the heart of the controversy surrounding Project Champion sits a dilemma faced by police on behalf of wider society, how to find a balance between on the one hand the duty to offer protection from serious harm and on the other the risk of excessive intrusion and the danger of stigmatising a whole community.

“I am convinced that when Project Champion was conceived in 2007 this dilemma was clearly understood. However, somewhere between conception and delivery the critical balance was lost.”

Human rights lawyers condemn English tests for spouses coming to UK

Home Office plans to introduce an English language test for those coming to Britain to marry UK citizens could breach human rights and race relations laws, according to leading human rights lawyers. A legal opinion by Rabinder Singh QC and Aileen McColgan, of Matrix Chambers, said the decision to impose the test from November has more to do with reducing the number of immigrants to Britain than minimising abuse. The lawyers warned that the introduction of pre-entry tests amounts to a breach of the right to family life under human rights laws. They also said it is likely to be

discriminatory to require someone with a degree in English from India to take the test but not someone from California who speaks only Spanish. The Matrix legal opinion was commissioned by the human rights group Liberty. Its director, Shami Chakrabarti, warned that the opinion would form the basis of a high court challenge if the tests, which will affect more than 25,000 spouses a year, go ahead. “We have warned that preentry English tests are discriminatory and unlawful – a view now endorsed by one of the foremost barristers in the country,” said Chakrabarti. “If the government persists with this halfbaked, pre-election, Border Agency policy, it will face embarrassing litigation unworthy of a coalition built on fundamental freedoms. If necessary, we will be the first in line to prevent genuine families being broken up.” The proposal to introduce preentry English language tests for

those coming to Britain to join a spouse or civil partner on a spousal visa was first put forward by Labour ministers two years ago to encourage integration, help newcomers get work and make clear to migrants the importance of learning English. The tests apply only to those who come from non-English-speaking countries. The top five nationalities of those coming to marry UK citizens are Pakistan (8,570), India (5,110), Bangladesh (2,780), US (2,110) and Thailand (1,776). The UK Border Agency said exceptions will be made in cases where migrants have physical or mental impairment, but added that these will be rare. The Matrix legal opinion also argues that those coming from non-Englishspeaking countries will be put at a disadvantage compared with those who cannot speak English but come from the US or other majority English-speaking countries. Guardian


I LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

I October 2010

Daily Star story on ‘Muslimonly public loos’ inaccurate 8

The Press Complaints Commission has ruled that a Daily Star article about “Muslim-only public loos” was both inaccurate and misleading. Following a complaint from a member of the public, the press watchdog launched an investigation over a front page article carried by the Star on 15 July, which claimed Rochdale shopping centre had installed “Muslim-only squat-hole loos”, and that the local council had wasted “YOUR money” on them. Adam Sheppard, who neither represents Rochdale Council or the Rochdale Exchange Centre, complained to the PCC claiming it was inaccurate to say that the toilets were “Muslim-only”. The facilities, which were common to many countries, would be available to all, he said. In addition, the decision to pay for the “Nile pans” was taken by the shopping centre, rather than the local council. It did not therefore involve taxpayers’ money.

Passion Islam

The Daily Star told the PCC while non-Muslims could have used the loos - they were designed with Muslims in mind. Nonetheless, it accepted that the headline was inaccurate in that non-Muslims would be free to use the toilets. It also accepted that the loos were paid for by a private developer. The PCC upheld Sheppard’s complaint, ruling that the Daily Star breached the accuracy clause of the Editors’ Code of Practice. In its ruling, the PCC said it was “particularly concerned at the lack of care the newspaper had taken in its presentation of the story”. It ruled that the two clear errors of fact would, in the circumstances, have misled readers “in a significant manner”.

The Daily Star removed the story from its website and published the following correction: “Our 15 July article said that squat style loos at Rochdale Exchange Centre were for Muslims only and were a waste of the council’s money. “We are pleased to make clear that the loos may be used by nonMuslims and that they were paid for by the developer.” By Oliver Luft

9/11 causes actress to convert to Islam A renowned British actress has added to her popularity after converting to Islam, attributing her curiosity about the religion to the US 9/11 events. Myriam Francois-Cerrah became popular when she was a child for acting in the 90’s hit film ‘Sense and Sensibility.’ Now she is gaining more popularity for being one of a growing number of educated middle class female converts to Islam in Britain, Fox News reported. Francois-Cerrah has referred to the September 11, 2001 events in the US as a motive behind her intellectual curiosity about Islam and as a result, her conversion. Also referring to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as a man of peace, she cites looking into the Prophet’s life as one of several reasons why she was motivated to change her career. Francois-Cerrah describes

Prophet Muhammad as one of the great misunderstood figures of history. She quotes some of the Prophet’s popular sayings, “One of his favorite quotes was, ‘Forgive him who wrongs you. Join him who cuts you off. Do good to him who does evil to you and speak the truth even if it be against yourself.’” Meanwhile, an MTV host in Germany, Kristianne Backer, whose conversion to Islam received a great deal of negative attention in the press, says she has no regrets over changing her religion. “I met a lot of famous, interesting people in life, but ultimately it was an empty life, so now I am from ‘EmptyV’, from entertainment to ‘innertainment.’ I had a crisis after a few years of jetting around like a circus horse, on stage, home alone, empty and I didn’t know why I was doing it and Islam was somehow introduced to me,” Backer said.

Kristianne Backer refers to her meeting with another woman convert, Sarah Joseph, who is editor of Emel magazine. Backer says: “I asked Sarah, what is drawing women to the religion? She answered, “People go to, travel to, Muslim countries, and see great beauty and hospitality and that draws them to it-the art and the architecture”, said Backer. Joseph explained that any negative propaganda about Islam has not only served to repel some people, but it has drawn others, according to Backer.

RADIO

& TV


Passion Islam

I October 2010

LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

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Cost-cutting warning over human rights report Campaigners have voiced concerns after it emerged that the UK Foreign Office’s annual human rights report could be downgraded as part of cost-cutting measures. The document has been published since 1997 to highlight levels of torture, oppression, capital punishment and arms trading around the world. But it seems the details may now only be issued online amid intense pressure on budgets. A Foreign Office spokesman denied the publication was being scrapped altogether, saying: “The only question is how that report can most cost-effectively be produced in the current financial climate. “We are looking at alternatives to the expensive glossy colour publications of the past, for example online publication or publication by command paper. “Final decisions will be

announced in due course.” The spokesman stressed that human rights and poverty reduction would remain the “irreducible core” of British foreign policy. But campaigning group Amnesty International warned that dropping the publication would leave a “huge gap in terms of accountability and transparency”. Director Kate Allen said: “The report is not perfect, but it offers an annual assessment of the UK’s activities on human rights. Without it there will be a big hole.” She added: “The Government has already stressed that it will concentrate on trade when it comes to foreign policy. But that move cannot be at any cost.” For his part, a senior Liberal Democrat MP Sir Menzies Campbell stressed the need for the new government to continue the publication of the report. The former party leader said he

agreed that the publication might be delivered more cheaply, but added that money-saving measures should not give the impression that Britain was any less committed to human rights. Meanwhile, the Former Foreign Secretary David Miliband also launched a scathing attack on the prospect of downgrading the report. passionislam.com

Britain makes defence pledges to U.S.

Britain gave the USA a direct promise that it will keep its nuclear deterrent and maintain special forces following the upcoming strategic defence and security review. British Defence Secretary Liam Fox made the pledge in talks with US counterpart Robert Gates after the Pentagon expressed concern at the scale of spending cuts planned by the coalition Government, The Times newspaper reported. Dr Fox was told by Chancellor, Finance secretary, George Osborne to find savings of

10 percent-20 percent in its 39 billion pounds annual budget as part of his austerity drive to wipe out the structural deficit within this Parliament. The strategic review has led to concerns that the Royal Navy may lose its new aircraft carriers, while Royal Air Force (RAF) bases could be closed and Army manpower cut. Questions were raised over the 20 billion pounds replacement of Britain’s ageing Trident nuclear deterrent at this week’s Liberal Democrat conference, where minister of state for defence Nick Harvey suggested a decision may be delayed until after the election scheduled for 2015. Speaking to Gates, Dr Fox is reported to have promised that Britain will retain the ability to mount medium-scale operations overseas,

but not at the level of the 10,000strong deployment in Afghanistan, the paper reported. He suggested that the review - due to report ahead of Osborne’s October 20 spending review - may leave the armed forces able to take part in operations involving around 6,000 troops in a campaign sustained for a reasonable length of time. And he promised that Britain would continue with the Joint Strike Fighter programme to provide combat aircraft to serve on the two proposed carriers. The enthusiastically Atlanticist Dr Fox told The Times that in the defence review, “we need to concentrate on where we think we can be best contributors as an ally to the US”. Gates is reported to have said that he wanted Britain to keep Trident because he did not want the US to have “sole responsibility” for providing a nuclear umbrella for Nato.


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Passion Islam

I October 2010

Israel flotilla raid ‘broke law’ In Case You Missed It

The UN human rights council issued a Report of the international fact-finding mission to investigate Violations of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, resulting from the Israeli attacks on the flotilla of ships carrying humanitarian assistance to Gaza. The mission has come to the firm conclusion that a humanitarian crisis existed on the 31 May 2010 in Gaza. “The preponderance of evidence from impeccable sources is far too overwhelming to come to a contrary opinion. Any denial that this is so cannot be supported on any rational grounds.” “The action of the IDF (Israeli Defense Force) in intercepting the Mavi Marmara cannot be justified in the circumstances even under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter,” said the report. “The conduct of the Israeli military and other personnel towards the flotilla passengers was not only disproportionate to the occasion but demonstrated levels of totally unnecessary and incredible violence.”

The experts added in the report. “It betrayed an unacceptable level of brutality. Such conduct cannot be justified or condoned on security or any other grounds. It constituted grave violations of human rights law and international humanitarian law,” they said. The mission considers that several violations and offences have been committed. It is not satisfied that, in the time available, to say that it has been able to compile a comprehensive list of all offences. “However, there is clear evidence to support prosecutions of the following crimes within the terms of article 147 of the Fourth Geneva Convention such as willful killing; torture or inhuman treatment; willfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body or health.” The mission also considers that a series of violations of Israel’s obligations under international human rights law have taken place, including such as right to life (article VI, ICCPR); torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (article VII,

ICCPR; CAT); right to liberty and security of the person and freedom from arbitrary arrest or detention (article IX, ICCPR); right of detainees to be treated with humanity and respect for the inherent dignity of the human person (article 10, ICCPR); and freedom of expression (article 19, ICCPR). Perpetrators of the more serious crimes being masked cannot be identified without the assistance of the Israeli authorities. They reacted in a violent manner whenever they thought that anyone was attempting to identify them. The mission sincerely hopes that there will be cooperation from the Israeli government to assist in their identification with a view to prosecuting the culpable and bring closure to the situation. The mission is aware that this is not the first time that the Government of Israel has declined to cooperate with an inquiry into events in which its military personnel were involved. The attack on the flotilla, which killed nine activists and injured some 35 others, must be viewed in the context of the ongoing problems between the Israeli Government and the Palestinian Authority and People. In carrying out its task, the mission was exposed to the depth of conviction on both sides of the correctness of their respective positions. “Similar disasters are likely to reoccur unless there is a dramatic shift in the existing paradigm,” expected the mission. “It must be remembered that might and strength are enhanced when attended by a sense of justice and fair play. Peace and respect have to be earned not bludgeoned out of any opponent. An unfair victory has never been known to bring lasting peace,” said the experts.

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Zakir Naik wins court battle against visa ban

Passion Islam

I October 2010

An Islamic scholar barred from entering the UK for his “unacceptable behaviour” has won the first round of his court battle against the Home Secretary’s ruling. A High Court judge decided the case for Dr Zakir Naik should be fast-tracked despite objections from Theresa May’s lawyers. Dr Naik’s solicitor Tayab Ali is being assisted by two QCs from the chambers of

LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS

Tony Blair’s wife Cherie Booth. He said: “It is manifestly unfair to proceed to judgment on the basis of remarks made many years previously.” Mr Ali added: “His comments have been taken extremely selectively and completely out of context.” Dr Naik, 44, was banned from coming to Britain on June 16 for a charity tour. His supporters said the

decision was blatant political posturing and unfair victimisation. The founder and chairman of global satellite channel Peace TV was due to address thousands in London, Birmingham and Sheffield. He has given more than 1,300 lectures around the world in the past 20 years. Mr Justice Nichol ordered a two-day hearing to begin on October 20.

Halal exhibition to showcase in Glasgow

On 10 October, 2010, from 12pm till 7pm, Glasgow Central Mosque Hall will play host to the UK’s first Be Halal exhibition, showcasing a free day of excellent Halal exhibitions, providing something for the whole family to enjoy. The event will bring suppliers together with the prosperous Muslim Community in Scotland and give the opportunity for traditional Muslim-focused companies to expand their customer base and showcase genuine products and services. The Be Halal exhibition is only part of a much bigger campaign to raise the profile of traditional Muslim

focused businesses. The concept will further see the launch of an online directory as well as the launch of a bi-annual magazine and thus the continual promotion of Be Halal in the coming years. More information, including Exhibition and sponsorship opportunities can be found on the official website www.behalal.info With regards to Halal products, Muslim buying behaviour is closely linked with core values. Thus the Glasgow Central Mosque is an ideal location to house the exhibition as it symbolises Muslim tradition as well as authenticity. Glasgow Central Mosque Hall is located in the city

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Racists thugs smash Muslim graves An attack on a Muslim graveyard in Leeds in which headstones were smashed and uprooted is being treated as a racist hate crime by police. It is the second time this year that vandals have desecrated Muslim graves at the multi-faith Harehills Cemetery in the city. The attack left families deeply distressed after motorcycle tyre marks were scored deep into freshly dug grave-tops and beer cans were strewn around the newly created site, which contains 100 Islamic burial plots. Residents, who say the cemetery has been repeatedly targeted in recent months, are calling for CCTV cameras to be installed. The scene of destruction was discovered by Sophie Rashid whose mother had only been interred at the cemetery two days earlier.

centre on the south side of the River Clyde. Its location is extremely easy to find with excellent transport links, and allows for visitors to come from all over the city and the surrounding areas. The main sponsor of this event is the Halal Monitoring Committee (HMC). Exhibiters include; Simras Fashion House, Delicious Too, Je Roche Fashion House, Saima Jewles, Candylicious and AminaMuslim resource centre, Be Halal’s official charity partners are Islamic Relief and Kidney Research UK. passionislam.com


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I WORLD NEWS

Passion Islam

I October 2010

Hamas urges UN to prosecute Israel A spokesman for the Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas, says the UN should prosecute Israeli leaders for the attack against a Gazabound convoy. Fawzi Barhoum made the comment after the UN Human Rights Council, investigating Tel Aviv’s assault against the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, said that Israel violated the international laws. “Now it’s required to be a mechanism in order to translate this report into action and to bring the occupation commanders to trial for the crimes they committed,” Barhoum said.

World Bank praises Saudi Arabia for generosity A recent report by the World Bank highlighted the importance and high volume of humanitarian assistance that has come out of the Arab world during the past four decades. The report emphasized that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have been among the most generous in the world, with official development assistance (ODA) averaging 1.5 percent of their combined gross national income (GNI) during the period 1973-2008, more than twice the United Nations target of 0.7 percent. The World Bank report stated, “The Kingdom has become a significant donor to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP) and is the biggest contributor in the Middle East and the 16th largest overall.” The report also noted that Saudi Arabia has contributed more than $2 billion to the International Development Association (IDA), a

He said the UN report emphasized that Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories violates human rights “not only against Palestinian people but against innocent people who came to show their sympathy.” On May 31, Israeli commandos stormed the aid convoy in international waters, killing nine Turkish activists and injuring dozens others. The Gaza Freedom Flotilla was trying to deliver thousands of tons of humanitarian supplies to the 1.5 million impoverished people of Gaza, who have been under Israel’s siege since 2007.

date, Saudi Arabia has contributed more than $240 million and more than 700 tons of food stuffs to people affected by the flooding. In addition, Saudi-led rescue operations have saved more than 550 people trapped as a result of the flooding. On September 21, a team of 30 doctors from the King Faisal Specialist Hospital went to Pakistan to help the flood victims.

Israeli settlers raid West Bank olive farms key humanitarian organization run out of the World Bank. In addition to government assistance, Arab nations have established a number of specialized institutions to provide development assistance to low-income countries. Humanitarian assistance through these independent institutions has increased by 4.4 percent per year between 1990 and 2008. On July 1, 2010, the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) announced that it had provided $8.23 billion to 75 countries between 1975 and 2009. Saudi Arabia has heeded the call of those natural disasters for decades, and did not waver when floods devastated Pakistan in August. The Kingdom immediately sent blankets, food stuffs and other critical items, such as medical supplies. To

Israeli settlers have attacked Palestinian olive groves in the West Bank cities of Nablus and Qalqilya, looting part of the farmers’ harvest. A Palestinian official in charge of the Israeli settlement file in northern West Bank said tens of Israelis from the nearby Yitzhar settlement clashed with Palestinian farmers. According to Ghassan Daghlas, the assailants then engaged in uprooting and breaking Palestinian olive trees and stole part of their crops. Daghlas emphasized that in addition to attacks by settlers, Israeli army forces have also launched a campaign recently to destroy Palestinian gardens and olive stands in the West Bank. The move inflicts further blows on the wrecked economy of the West Bank where the livelihood of most Palestinian families depends on agriculture and their olive groves, in particular.


Italy drops airport scanner test Passion Islam

I October 2010

WORLD NEWS

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After a six-month test, Italy’s government have dropped the use of full-body scanners for security checks in airports, judging them slow and ineffective, Italian daily Corriere della Sera reported. The scanners in the airports of Rome, Venice and the southern city of Palermo are no longer in use and Milan’s airport is likely to stop using the machines in the near future. “We didn’t get good results from body scanners during testing, it takes a long time to examine a person, more than with a manual inspection,” said Vito Riggio, the president of Italy’s aviation authority. Officials also believe measures taken to address privacy concerns over the use of the scanners have dampened the machines’ effectiveness at locating arms and explosives, Corriere della Sera reported.

“Dutch Anti-Islam Wilders collaborating with Mossad” A Berlin-based Dutch political expert said that Dutch politician Geert Wilders was in fact working for Israel’s notorious Mossad secret service. Meeting with foreign media representatives in Berlin, Ruud Koopmans of Berlin’s Social Science Research Center said he could ‘not rule out’ that the Dutch Islamophobic politician was ‘providing specific services for Mossad,’ referring to Wilders’ ‘very intense ties’ with Israel. He added that the issue of Israel was perhaps of such importance to Wilders that he was even willing to cooperate with Mossad. Koopmans pointed out Wilders had lived in Israel as a teenager and his wife was also Jewish. There has been widespread speculation in the Dutch media on

Wilders’ links to Israel’s intelligence agency. According to Dutch news sources, there had been fears in the Dutch foreign ministry that Wilders could ‘have either provided or received information from Mossad.’ The head of the anti-Islam party has frequently visited the Israeli embassy, Dutch journalists have pointed out. They have also emphasized his strong links with the Jewish lobby in not only the Netherlands but also the US. Wilders’ far-right Party for Freedom is reportedly nearing a deal that would support a minority Dutch government comprised of the Dutch Christian Democrat party (CDA) and right-wing liberals VVD.

Halal Meat Served in Half of Schools in Brussels

Slightly more than half of the 61 Dutchlanguage schools in the Belgian capital Brussels surveyed showed that their school kitchens do not serve pork so as not to offend the Muslim community. 12 percent of the schools serve halal meat exclusively, according to a report in the newspaper Gazet van Antwerpen. The survey was carried out by the right-wing, anti-immigrant party Vlaams Belang to see how many Dutchspeaking schools in Belgium have adapted to multiculturalism. An estimated 20 percent of Brussels’ population of 1 million is Muslim. Olivier Servaix, a sociologist at the Catholic university of Louvain, said in an interview to the La Libre Belgique daily published in March 2008 that Brussels would have a Muslim majority in 15-20 years due to the community’s high birth-rate.

First Muslim MP in Australia sworn in

The first Muslim elected to Australia’s parliament was sworn in with his hand on holy Quran. Ed Husic, whose mother and father are Bosnian migrants, said it was an enormous privilege to serve in Canberra as he conceded that his unique place in Australian political history was something

of a milestone. “Given my background, there are some people taking a small slice of pride or happiness,” he told The Australian newspaper. Husic, a former union boss who grew up in the western Sydney area he represents, won his place in the 150-seat

House of Representatives in Canberra for the ruling Labor Party in August 21 polls. He was among the MPs sworn into Australia’s 43rd parliament by the chief justice of the high court in Canberra. Muslims make up about 1.7 percent of Australia’s population of 22 million. passionislam.com


NO JUSTICE 16

I WORLD NEWS

Passion Islam

I October 2010

In Case You Missed It

Aafia Siddiqui Sentenced to 86 years

The case should have been thrown out of court, but it went ahead and she was found guilty on the afternoon of 23rd September 2010 Pakistani neuroscientist and mother of three Aafia Siddiqui was sentenced to 86 years on five charges by Judge Berman in a Manhattan courtroom. The Justice for Aafia Coalition released the following statement: “We are deeply saddened by the harsh sentence passed on Dr Aafia Siddiqui by Judge Richard Berman today. At such a difficult time, our thoughts and prayers are with Aafia’s family, who have been separated from her since March 2003. It has now been over seven and a half years since Dr Siddiqui was abducted with her three young children by Pakistani and American agencies. She has since been separated from her children and family, detained in a series of secret prisons and physically and psychologically abused by her captors. Following a blatantly prejudiced and unfair trial in which little conclusive evidence of her guilt was presented, she was found guilty. We hoped that Judge Berman would have opened his eyes to the manifest injustice that has been committed against Dr Siddiqui and repatriated her to her country. But it seems that Judge Berman was adamant in his position despite the enormous level of public support for Aafia. In Iran, in a goodwill gesture, released Sarah Shourd, an American woman accused of espionage, a

crime against the state punishable by death. We are disappointed that the United States has been unable to exercise a similar degree of mercy and leniency in the case of another innocent woman who stands accused of crimes against its government. While we are disappointed by Judge Berman’s decision, we condemn in the strongest terms the stance of the Pakistani government towards this beloved daughter of the nation. While we must never look to the wolf for protection, we expect the shepherd to care for his flock. The Pakistani government has from the outset been complicit in Aafia’s disappearance and detention, and has displayed nothing but contempt for its people and dignity through its cowardly stance in requesting her repatriation. They are a stain upon the honourable reputation of the country. JFAC will continue the struggle for justice for Dr Aafia to try and secure her freedom and unite her with her family and loved ones. We remind Aafia’s supporters that this struggle may seem tiresome but as Imam Ahmad advised his student, we will only find rest when our feet set foot in paradise.” Human rigts organisation Cageprisoners rejects the guilty verdict and rejects the 86 sentence of incarceration. Evidence of her abduction, rendition and torment

faced at the hands of the Pakistani and United States government, crushing to the prosecution case, was thrown out by the Judge and thus undermines the very premise of

Human Rights organisation disgusted by the actions of the US and Pakistani governments her trial. Cageprisoners Director, Moazzam Begg, commented: “I just returned from Pakistan where Cageprisoners were trying to make final diplomatic efforts to intervene on behalf of Aafia Siddiqui. The sentiment of the general public makes it clear that the entirety of Pakistan want her back in the country. This case had the opportunity for the Obama administration to show that it had some semblance of humanity in its foreign policy, and yet they once again shown that they have no compassion and have no understanding of the repercussions of their actions in Pakistan.” The dignity with which she faced the court only serves to highlight the gross injustice that has been carried out against her. Cageprisoners will continue to fight for the release of Dr Aafia Siddiqui. passionislam.com

Insult on Islam: Government will not keep quiet The Malaysian government will not keep quiet to any form of insult against Islam in the country to avoid any untoward incidence. Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Dr Mashitah Ibrahim said any form of insult against the religion

should not be condoned and stern action should be taken against those who insulted Islam. “I fear that something might happen if no stern action is taken,” she told reporters at an Aidilfitri open house hosted by Yayasan Waqaf Malaysia.

She was commenting on several video-clips posted on the YouTube website of a priest giving a speech which insulted Islam. A newspaper carried a report which stated the protem president of the Muslim Bloggers Alliance, Zainol Abideen, as

saying that the priest was Benjamin Stephen and that the speech was made in a church in Kuching, Sarawak (East Malaysia). Mashitah said she regretted that such a thing could happen and urged the Sarawak Islamic Religious Department to investigate.


18

I WORLD NEWS

Passion Islam

I October 2010

Discrimination against Muslims Increases in the Workplace in US

According to Islamic groups in the U.S., tensions in the workplace are increasing against Muslims in areas all over the U.S., even in historically diverse and accepting parts of the country. Muslim professionals are complaining about discrimination in the workplace in what Islamic groups believe may be record numbers in 2010. Islamic workers say they have been subjected to taunts such as “Osama” or being called a terrorist. Some businesses are even setting up roadblocks to prevent employees from wearing headscarfs or take prayer breaks according to the New York Times report. The trend toward Islamic discrimination has been mounting. In the year ending September 30,

2009 there were a record number of 803 claims of discrimination against Muslims in the U.S. Those claims were up 20% from the previous year, and up almost 60% from 2005. While Muslims constitute less than 2% of the US population, one quarter of all religious discrimination claims filed with the EEOC last year were made by Muslims. Jewish claims were also up slightly. Several companies have faced claims of discrimination recently. At the end of August, the EEOC brought two discrimination suits against JBS Swift, alleging that the company fostered a hostile work environment for 160 Somali and Muslim employees. Supervisors and coworkers are accused of throwing blood, meat, and bones at Muslim

Paris imam invents portable mosque for better praying A Paris imam and part-time inventor has created a portable mosque to help the faithful concentrate better on their prayers wherever they are. Named the Mirhbox, the 2-meter high structure when deployed takes the form of a mirhab, a niche in the wall of a mosque that indicates the direction of Makkah, which Muslims should face when praying. “I realized that when I’m in the mosque, I concentrated better at my prayers more than when I am at home. So I thought of recreating the mirhab which creates a better environment for meditation in

isolation,” Aubervilliers Imam Hassen Bounamcha told Le Parisien newspaper. Made from rigid cardboard, polystirene, plywood or plastic, reinforced with two layers of aluminum, the modular structure in three parts also comes with a Turkish rug. Priced from 450 euros ($570) for a top-range model that includes a built-in loudspeaker, to 69 euros for a children’s model, Bounamcha said he hoped to sell at least a thousand within a year and has sold the pattern in several countries.

employees while calling them offensive names. It also alleges that prayer breaks were sabotaged. Abercrombie & Fitch had an EEOC claim filed against them for discriminating against an 18-year-old Muslim woman who was wearing a hijab. Disney has also recently come under EEOC fire after a female employee accused the company of not making the necessary accommodations to allow her to wear a headscarf while on the job. She was offered other positions at the company, but all were behind the scenes and not a suitable alternative she said. It is believed that some of the added tension in the workplace may be fueled by proposed plans to build an Islamic center in Lower Manhattan near Ground Zero.

24000 Memorize Quran in Gaza Some 24000 Quran memorization students in Gaza graduated in a ceremony held last month, Jordanian daily As-Sabil reports. The ceremony was held by Gaza’s Dar-ol-Quran and Sunna Center with the presence of local officials. Its motto was “Sign of Greatness, Victory for Al-Aqsa Mosque”. The participating students were those who have learned the entire holy Quran by heart. Addressing the ceremony, Abdur-Rahman Al-Jamal head of the Dar-ol-Quran and Sunna Center congratulated the students on their great achievement and highlighted the lofty status of Quran memorizers before God. He said some 50000 students attended the summer Quran memorization courses, 24000 of whom managed to learn the entire holy Quran by heart. Al-Jamal added that the courses were held by the center under the supervision of the Awqaf and Religious Affairs Ministry.


New al-Aqsa excavations

Passion Islam

I October 2010

Palestinians are warning against Israel’s new scheme to judaize al-Quds (Jerusalem) as Tel Aviv prepares for an excavation near the highly revered al-Aqsa Mosque. Israeli authorities are planning a huge excavation near the Wailing Wall and the field to the west of al-Aqsa Mosque, the Palestinian institute for Cultural Heritage and Endowment warned. “The occupation authorities are planning to judaize the Wailing (alBuraq) Wall and the area around al-Aqsa Mosque above and below the ground,” the institute said in a statement carried by the Palestinian Sama news agency. Israel’s Planning Local Construction Commission is expected to ratify a project to build in an area of 600 square meters on the grounds and basement of the

Wailing Square, according to the statement. The implementation of such a plot, along with other Israeli schemes, would be a direct threat to al-Aqsa Mosque and the Wailing Wall as an integral part of the mosque, especially since the excavation is expected to dig under the mosque’s grounds and its adjacent buildings, it further warned. “Israeli occupation forces and the daily facts on the ground are associated with the destruction of Islamic landmarks and the Arab al-Quds and a race against time to judaize the area under and around al-Aqsa Mosque.” The Wailing Wall, sacred to both Muslims and Jews, is located on the western side of the Temple Mount (the Noble Sanctuary) in the Old City of the Israeli-annexed East al-Quds.

French police deny racism charge The French Interior Ministry denied allegations that a special unit formed to fight “itinerant delinquency” had compiled a listing and files based on peoples ethnic origins. A statement from the Interior Ministry said that “a genealogical filing system” had been removed in 2007 in line with legal demands. French daily “Le Monde” claimed that the Central Office for the Fight against Itinerant Delinquency (OCLDI) had recourse to files

complied using ethnic criteria. Such files, based on genealogical characteristics or information, are illegal in France. The Interior Ministry also pointed out that the Gendarmes were in charge of the OCLDI and they had joined the Interior Ministry authority only in 2009, and as soon as the issue of ethnic profiling emerged the Interior Ministry set up a control group to oversee the data base question.

WORLD NEWS

I 19

Israeli forces assassinate Hamas member in West Bank Israeli soldiers shot dead a senior Hamas member in his bedroom during an overnight raid in the West Bank town of Tulkarem. Palestinian eyewitnesses said Iyad Shalabaya, 37 years, a commander within the armed wing of the Islamic movement, was asleep when Israeli soldiers stormed his house in Noor Shams refugee camp to the east of the city and fired three gunshots at him. Israeli forces also arrested 15 people from the town, most of them members and supporters of Hamas, which had claimed reasonability for killing four Israeli settlers and wounding two in attacks in the West Bank more than two weeks ago. The Israeli forces took the body of Shalabaya for a few hours before arranging with the Palestinian forces to return it, eyewitnesses said. The raid is considered the first planned targeting a Palestinian commander in the West Bank since Israel and the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) resumed peace talks earlier this month. Meanwhile, Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad condemned the assassination in Tulkarem, stressing that such act by Israel was a dangerous escalation which would hinder the already-shaky peace talks. Fayyad said in a press release that such escalation by Israel endangers the international efforts to revive the political process. The Palestinian premier called on the international community to interfere and pressure Israel to stop violating Palestinian rights. with the international terror network several years ago and has targeted French interest in the region in the past — French converts to Islam and French nationals who have trained with extremist groups in Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. passionislam.com


Germany to teach Islam in schools

20

I WORLD NEWS

The German state of Lower Saxony will start including Islam in its schools’ core curriculum as part of an initiative to counter growing anti-Islam sentiments in Europe. Dr. Bernd Althusmann, Minister for Education at the northwestern state of Lower Saxony, announced that schools in the state will start including Islamic education in their main curriculum, the London-based Asharq al-Awsat reported “I think we will be able to start implementation by the academic year after the next ,” Althusmann said during a visit to an elementary school in the city of Hanover and in which he attended an Islamic education class. For the time being, Islamic education has not exceeded a few experimental models in 42 schools in Lower Saxony. Almost 2,000 Muslim students in these schools currently get Islamic education in the state. The initiative was triggered

by recent waves of anti-Islam sentiments, especially with the recent establishment of a conservative party modeled after the Dutch Part for Freedom led by controversial MP Geert Wilders whose movie Fitna outraged Muslims all over the world. The new party, called Freedom, was founded by Berlin MP René Stadtkewitz who was kicked out of Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union for his views against Islam and for inviting Geert Wilders to give a speech in Berlin. Stadtkewitz, 45, said that Islam is the reason why immigrants fail to integrate into the German society because of its rejection of different views. “Islam is not just a religion, it’s also a political system. Islam is intolerant towards those who think differently,” he said in statement following the foundation of the party. passionislam.com

Passion Islam

I October 2010

Build Islamic Center on Ground Zero, Says Moore Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore is weighing in on the proposed Islamic Community Center in New York City, saying he doesn’t want it to be built near Ground Zero but rather on Ground Zero. “I want it built on Ground Zero. Why? Because I believe in an America that protects those who are the victims of hate and prejudice,” Moore writes in an open letter on his website. “I believe in an America that says you have the right to worship whatever God you have, wherever you want to worship. “And I believe in an America that says to the world that we are a loving and generous people and if a bunch of murderers steal your religion from you and use it as their excuse to kill 3,000 souls, then I want to help you get your religion back. And I want to put it at the spot where it was stolen from you,” he added. The filmmaker is also urging his supporters to contribute money to help fund the controversial project and is pledging to match up to $10,000 in donations.

Muslim community welcome name change of Spanish nightclub Spokesmen of the Muslim community welcomed the act taken by the owners of a nightclub called (Mecca) to change its name into “The Island.” In a joint press conference leaders of the Muslim community and the club owners announced the renaming of the nightclub situated in the Spanish town of Murcia. The compromise was hailed as satisfactory to all parties and conducive to reducing the threats of Islamic extremist groups and

to ensuring the continuity of the business. Both sides expressed satisfaction with the manner in which things were settled without resulting in major problems. President of The Federacion of Islamic religious identities in Spain (Feeri) Mounir Benjelloun-Andalusi said in an exclusive interview to KUNA that Islamic associations made huge efforts to prevent the escalation of a crisis what was exaggerated by

the media. “The dispute could have negative consequences on Muslims in Spain and in neighboring countries,” he noted. Andalusi added that both parties reached agreement to modifying some controversial aspects of the nightclub’s architecture, thereby removing the crescent, changing the minaret into a lighthouse and finally changing the club’s logo. passionislam.com


Passion Islam

SPORT I 21

I October 2010

Zidane backs Qatar 2022 bid Zinedine Zidane has backed Qatar’s bid to host the World Cup in 2022. The former France midfielder said it was time for the Middle East to hold the tournament, after Africa hosted it for the first time in June and July this year. Qatar’s bid team have appointed the former World Cup and European Championships winner as an ambassador for their committee. The Arabian Gulf state is one of nine vying for the finals but their main opposition is likely to come from Australia, Japan, South Korea and United States. “Football is for everyone,” Zidane said in a statement. “When I think of all the youth of the Middle East, what they’re missing is an event like the World Cup. “We had [the 2010 World Cup] in Africa and now it is time for the Middle East.” The 2018 finals are almost certain to go to Europe, with England and Russia in the running against joint bids from Spain and Portugal, and Belgium and the Netherlands. And that should mean that a country from the rest of the world hosts the next edition four years later. Qatar would be the smallest host country since Uruguay held the inaugural tournament in 1930. Harold Mayne-Nicholls, the head

of an inspection team from world governing body Fifa, hinted that the country’s size, rather than its fierce summer heat, could rule it out. Fifa, who spent three days in Qatar this week, will announce the venues for 2018 and 2022 in Zurich on December 2. Th bid chairman Mohammed bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, a prominent member of the Qatari royal family, said the country would meet every challenge. “We truly believe now is the time. We invite 12 years of preparation, we want to take that on,” he said. “We want to prove to the world that the Middle East, just like Africa, can be successful at hosting the

World’s greatest tournament. “Choosing Qatar is not a risky decision it is a bold decision, it is one you will not, absolutely not, regret.” Qatar has strongly advocated that its small size – it has a population of just 1.6 million on its 11,000 square km, mainly based in the capital Doha – was a major selling point for a compact World Cup. It will use solar-powered technology to cool stadiums to about 27C while the temperature outside could be about 40C or higher, and it has stressed that it would tolerate overseas fans drinking alcohol in designated zones despite being an Islamic nation. passionislam.com

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22

I SPECIAL FEATURE

In recent years, certain developments have taken place which has brought the subject of music as an extremely significant issue. Music has spread to such an extent that it is afflicting every muslim in this modern era. Today, individuals are being confronted by a situation where one is forced to listen to music whether by choice or without. Music is played in nearly all department stores and super markets. Even whilst walking in the streets, we find cars blaring with music. No matter which direction we go, we are blasted with music. The increasing popularity of music, which is prevalent in our society poses a tremendous danger for muslims. Music is Haraam References within the context of the Holy Qur`aan along with the Hadith of the Prophet confirm that music is haraam. Interpreters of the Qur`aan have defined the term `lahwal hadith` which is mentioned in the Qur`aan as: 1) Singing and listening to songs. 2) Purchasing of male and female singers. 3) Purchase of instruments of fun and amusement. When Sayyidana Abdullah Ibne Mas`ood , a very close companion of our Prophet was asked about the meaning of the term `lahwal hadith`, he replied “I swear by Him besides whom there is no other God,that it refers to ghinaa (singing ).” This statement, he repeated three times. This view is unanimously supported by the four Khalifas, the eminent Sahabaah, Tabi`een, the four Imaams and other reliable Islaamic scholars and authorities. One hadith from the Bukhari Shareef, the most authentic Book of Hadith, further confirms unlawfulness of music and singing : `There will be people of my Ummah who will seek to make lawful; fornication, wine-drinking and the use of ma`aazif ( musical instruments ).` Detailed analysis of the arabic word `ma`aazif ` shows that it refers to musical instruments, the sounds of those musical instruments and

In ISLAM Passion Islam

singing with the accompaniment of instruments. Closer analysis of the wordings of the Hadith establishes the prohibition of music. Firstly, the words `seek to make lawful ` shows that music is not permissible, as logically one can only seek to make lawful that which is not allowed. Secondly, if music was not prohibited, then it would not have been brought within the same context as fornication and wine-drinking. MUSIC - IT`S EFFECTS Muslims are aware that nothing has been prohibited by Allah except that which is harmful to the welfare of a Muslim individual and the society as a whole. The divine attribute behind the prohibition of music can be comprehended by looking into the diverse influence music can have. Experiments carried out by doctors and professors have confirmed that the music of today is such that it does not only affect the brain, but each and every organ of one`s body. There is a close relationship between music and bodily movements. We find that people listening to music automatically start tapping their fingers and feet, as if the music is permeating in their blood. It is also proved that music affect`s one`s emotions, increases

I October 2010

arousal in terms of alertness and excitement and also leads to various physiological changes in the person. In a psychology experiment, it was found that listening to moderate type of music increased one`s normal heart beat, whilst listening to rock music the heart beat increased even further, yet people claim that music has no effect. It is a very ignorant and misguided attitude to percieve music as a form of pleasure and passing of time, since the messages of today`s music follow a general theme of love, fornication, drugs and freedom. We find that the whole world is obsessed with the kufr idea of freedom, i.e. freedom of speech, freedom of movement, etc. In modern schools and universities, we observe independence, free expression and secular thinking being encouraged. This idea of freedom, “ It`s my life, I`ll do what I want” is a predominant, underlying theme of today`s music. It is being used as a means for drilling those modern ideologies that are totally contrary to Islamic Shariah and values, into the minds of Muslims. One should abstain from evil audacities such as listening to music and encourage others to do the same too. MAY ALMIGHTY GUIDE US ALL TO THE STRAIGHT PATH- AMEEN.


Passion Islam

I October 2010

SPECIAL FEATURE

I 23

The Reality Of Life Let us take a look at the world, so beautiful, so fascinating and full of luxuries, top of the range cars, beautiful women, great landmarks, state of the art stadiums, bungalows, mansions, casinos, nightclubs, pubs, cinemas, theme parks, this is the life. Who wouldn’t like to live a chilled out life? who does not desire that these luxuries were to last forever? Now back to reality, is it not true that all these luxuries, this world, will one day perish? Is it not true that this world will one day come to an end? Everyday we see changes taking place in the world; just take a look at the progress that technology has made. How about the changes that take place in ones life, look at the changes that take place when the child is in the womb of his mother, the child is then born, he enjoys his childhood, he then grows older, he gets married, he has his own kids, responsibility’s befall him from left, right and centre, then a day comes when that same child reaches his destiny and departs from this world. Similarly seeds are planted, the flower grows and blossoms, then a time comes when that plant dries and is no more. Beloved Muslims! This world is nothing but amusement and play; it is full of luxuries and fantasies that are fascinating but deceptive. It’s so easy to fall into its trap, but to escape from its clutches is extremely difficult. Let us now search for the reality of life, what is the purpose of our creation? What is the reason as to why Allah Taa’la has brought us into this world? If we take a look at the Qur`an, we find that Allah Taa’la clearly states that he has created us so that we may worship him, the outcome of which will be that Allah Taa’la will be pleased with us and will Inshallah save us from the hellfire and will grant us with the bounties of paradise. Our destination is the hereafter. This world is similar to a service station. For example a person is travelling from Manchester to London , London is his destination, along the way he makes a stop at a service station in Birmingham . Now whilst making this stop, this person will not look for a place to sleep, he will not search for a place to settle down, rather he will keep the stop short and quick, because he knows that he is still a couple of hours away from his intended destination. Similarly, Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Umar says that the Prophet once held me and said “ live in this world as though you are a traveller or a wayfarer” (Bukhari). Now, when a person is travelling, he will not go to extreme measures when it comes to sorting out luggage and provision, nor will he be out trying to make loads of friends, but rather he will get his job done quickly and return home. Similarly, a traveller of this world should also remember and keep in mind his actual destination. If we take a look at the Seerah of our Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad , we will realise what kind of connection our Prophet had with this world. On one occasion Prophet Muhammad was resting on a mattress which was made of date stones, and because of its hard surface, marks had appeared on the blessed back of Rasulullah . Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Masud said, “O Prophet of Allah ! If you command us, we could get for you a soft mattress to sleep on”. Prophet replied “what connection have I got with this world, my connection with this world is similar to that of a traveller who takes shade for a short while under a tree, then leaves it and continues his journey.” May Allah Taa’la take out of our hearts the love for this world, and replace it with the desire to succeed in the hereafter, Ameen.


Passion Islam

I October 2010

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