Britishmisk's Blog

Category: Politics

Time Magazine’s Person of the Year 2011

I saw this on someone’s Facebook page yesterday and it really struck me, so I decided to share it on here. To use an image of, what looks like, a Muslim woman wearing a face covering as a symbol of freedom and struggle against oppression, is certainly in this political climate something very extraordinary. I picked up a copy this evening to find the cover was designed by Ai WeiWei who was one of the other candidates shortlisted for Time’s annual accolade. Even the Muslim working at the till of WhSmith was taken in by it.

As a Muslim blogger it certainly may seem a strange thing that throughout 2011 I haven’t commented on the so-called Arab Spring at all. Personally I feel Islam is not a political religion so to speak, and what has happened in the Middle East has very little to do with it. I’m also very apprehensive as to whether toppling a dictatorial regime, even if it is from the inside, will actually lead to a better government. I suppose it’s the Pakistani within me somewhere, who has seen the results of a nation being ‘liberated’ in the name of faith. Even now we are still seeing unrest in Egypt and the struggle of freedom for Egyptians still goes on. And whether democracy actually equals freedom, I’m not so sure. Though our western politicians and secular philosophers may see saying that as humanist blasphemy, again the Pakistani in me has Zardari to support him. (Who would have thought he’d ever be useful for anything).

Time’s end of year issue, as you would expect, is an excellent summary of the year’s major protests and revolutions. I bought it mainly for the cover, but after reading an issue of Time after nearly 15 years I may pick it up more often.

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Shaykh Hamza returns to the Riz Khan show

Fadel Soliman responds to Anwar al-Awlaki

Ever since the Fort Hood shooting a few months back, Anwar al-Awlaki had been quoted in the media as saying he supported Nidal Hassan’s actions, and voicing his general support for terrorist acts in the name of Islam. As a response the US government issued an international arrest warrant that pretty much amounted to “Wanted: Dead or Alive”.

Many Muslims became skeptical. And with good reason. The number of times the media reports inaccuracies regarding Muslims in the west is uncountable. Just a few weeks previously after Israel’s illegal attack of the aid flotilla, I took part in the first protest that marched from Downing Street to the Israeli embassy. Thousands of people showed up, at least enough to fill a small football stadium, but the next day the British media failed to report the number of people who took part in the protest, with the most optimistic number being given as 1000. Even now when trying to find an article on the BBC news website about the numerous protests that have taken place in recent weeks I was unable to find any.

So when it was reported on numerous sites regarding Awlaki’s stance on Fort Hood many took it with a pinch of salt as there was no way to verify that what was being said was by the man himself. Even his father appeared on television defending him and stating what was being attributed to him was false.

But after a recent TV interview al-Awlaki has made his stance clear regarding his beliefs around terrorist attacks against the west in the name of Islam. And to be honest I am not surprised. I first heard of the “Sheikh” from a friend of mine a few years ago who highly recommended his CD sets that were widely available. These CDs became very popular in the Muslim community and many people developed a fondness of al-Awlaki by hearing the kind of knowledge he espoused from his talks. I began listening to his series on Umar al-Khattab and I was impressed by the amount of information that he gave out in such short periods of time. But, as I listened further I began to gain a sense of something lying underneath of many of the things he was talking about. For a long periods of time in his talks he would go off topic and explain very narrow minded opinions and ideas regarding non-Muslims and living in the west, I eventually stopped listening as I became tired of his continuous rants. At the time I was listening to them al-Awlaki was still in prison in Yemen, and I saw the reason as to why the US would have wanted the Yemeni authorities to arrest him. Although up until that point he had never openly condoned terrorism, the Bush administration was suspicious of anyone and everyone, the epitome of this mentality being seen in the refusal of Yusuf Islam and Dr Tariq Ramadan from entering the US.

It could very well have been his imprisonment that pushed him over the edge. There has been global plea from Muslims across the internet to ask al-Awlaki to come back to the fold of normality, the video posted above being the most recent attempt. I took it off of Imam Suhaib Webb’s website, which has been at the forefront at platforming refutations of al-Awlaki’s new found ideology. Whatever the case may be, it is now for certain that he is with those of have forsaken the Divine Law, the Sunnah of the Beloved (SAWS), the practice of the first generations, and the consensus of the rightly guided scholars. All of which is eloquently explained by Brother Fadel Soliman in this short video, as well as including some of his TV interview in which he makes it clear that he supports airplane hijackings and bombings.

Let’s pray and hope that he does leave the way of transgression, as well as all our other brothers in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine who have been brainwashed by Shaytaan regarding the laws of jihad. And to Him is our return.

Barack Obama’s speech to the Muslim world

It’s been a while since I posted anything so I have updated with the lesson 3 and 4 of Shama’il al-Muhamadiyya taught by Sheikh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi down below.

I also wanted to post this up:

The global online Muslim world has been quite split over Barack Obama, generally Muslims are pessimistic about everything and President Obama is no exception. Abdal Qadir as-Sufi wrote an article about his speech and began by saying he is not a very good speaker. Needless to say I didn’t really bother continuing it after the first few paragraphs seeing as even Obama’s most ardent opponents are unanimous that his oratory skills are impeccable.

But there have been (Somewhat surprisingly) a number of Muslim voices who have been supportive of Obama. Imam Zaid Shakir and Suhaib Webb being two examples. Ever since I heard about Obama on H. Ahmed’s blog he has always come across to me as a decent human being, and as his presidential campaign gained speed it only reaffirmed my assumptions. For me personally this speech stated everything I wanted to hear from a US president regarding his foreign policy towards the Muslim world.

One thing in particular that was important was his statement that democracy cannot work everywhere in the world, as long as a nation has a governmental system that respects basic human rights the US is [theoretically] willing to accept it. So there is a possibility that if during President Obama’s presidency the Caliphate were to be reestablished, or an Islamic state with real Shar’iah (None of that phoney-baloney Taliban/Saudi inspired stuff) that the US could possibly accept it. Which is a good thing.

I know this almost a month overdue, I began writing it before I left for Andalucia and Morocco. Look out for reflections on my journey soon.