The Muslim campaigner Moazzam Begg has been charged with ‘terrorism-related’ offences relating to a trip to Syria.
Moazzam was unjustly incarcerated in the US-Gulag at Guantanamo Bay and on his return became the foremost advocate against the on-going abuses there, as well as the wider programme of unlawful detentions and the complicity of the US and UK governments in torture – especially in countries such as Libya and Syria.
But Moazzam, widely respected though he is, is only one of many who have been penalized related to the on-going Syrian conflict. Many unnamed Muslim men and women in the UK have been detained under terror-related laws. A teacher from the north of England was held like a terrorist despite never having travelled to Syria. His career and reputation were ruined despite police saying ‘there is nothing to suggest that any of the wider community in Manchester has been under threat’. Charities have been under fire for their sending of charitable aid to Syria.
So, the question should be asked: Why is Syria a ‘forbidden’ conflict’ as far as the UK state is concerned? Why are there no similar penalties for those who join the Israeli Defence Force, well known for its brutality and crimes? Why were there no similar penalties for British citizens who went to Libya to help fight the tyrannical forces of Muammar Gaddafi? Why does British history celebrate the personal contributions of those who travelled to Spain to fight Franco’s regime, yet criminalise those who travel to Syria to fight Assad’s regime? Why, why, why the hypocrisy?
The reasons can be divided into two: Firstly, British Foreign Policy and secondly the desire to suppress Muslims in Britain.
British Foreign Policy and the Syrian Conflict – In Libya, Britain and other powers saw that their man in Tripoli was on his last legs. They intervened after they felt they had secured a new leadership that safeguarded their energy interests in Libya. But in Syria, Assad has proved more resilient and a compliant alternative leadership has been elusive. Consequently, Britain initially supported Assad and was very late in the day to denounce him. America did so even later and Russia still refuses to do so. Moreover, Britain and America, whilst searching for a credible opposition that secures Western interests, have done nothing except offer rhetoric against Assad.
Initially the people of Syria called for international help but saw the hypocritical stance by the West. So they learned to rely on Allah alone to fight against the murderous regime and defend the people. The opposition may not be wholly unified but their motivation, language and character is clearly Islamic. This has not sat comfortably with Western policy makers who recognize that a future Syria with an independent Islamic outlook would not be a compliant agent in the region. Hence, there began a systematic campaign to demonise the opposition in Syria as ‘extremists’ – then later to say some had ‘links to terrorists’.
British State policy towards the Muslim Community – The British State would like to see a Muslim community that values UK Foreign Policy interests above any love for their Ummah.
The government has used sporadic violent incidents as excuses to further a programme of assimilation for Muslims in Britain under an ‘anti-terror’ label. They falsely argue the more Islamic a person is, the more potentially dangerous they are. That is why a spectrum of behaviour – from supporting the Ummah in a variety of ways to separate seating for men and women – has all been demonized as ‘extremist’. They hope to create a ‘British Islam’ where any element of Islam that conflicts with the interests of the nation state, global capitalism, or liberal secular values is abolished from beliefs and practices.
This is why Muslims who support those who oppose Assad in Syria are criminalized or demonized – even those who do charitable work.
This is why anti-terror laws have been drafted so widely that can include people who do nothing violent.
This is why those anti-terror laws are applied selectively according to the political motivations of the State – laws which could later be applied to non-Muslim dissenting voices, as they are today applied to Muslim dissenting voices.
This is why Islam is demonized and practicing Muslims are attacked as ‘extreme’.
What should we be doing?
Stand by those who are targeted and demonized: People may ask whether or not these people are innocent – but should be in no doubt as to the guilt of successive British governments in their anti-Muslim policies. We must continue to offer our dua for our brother Moazzam Begg and his family at this testing time – as well as with any who have been treated unjustly over these issues. We must not abandon those families who have become victims of draconian politicized policies that have made Britain a police state for Muslims.
Stand by those who oppose Assad: We must continue to support, with our words and prayers, those who are driven by their Islamic motivation to remove Assad’s regime– in particular those in the opposition who say they will implement a sincere and just Islamic system in Syria if they were successful. We should not be deterred by the scare-mongering rhetoric from sending our sadaqah to help people in the region.
Understand and make people aware of the neo-colonial plans in Syria and elsewhere. The leaders of great powers such as Britain, Europe, the United States and Russia may enjoy their power games in the Middle East, Af-Pak, Ukraine and in Africa – but their games bring instability and misery for millions around the world, and we should expose this.
Stand for our Islamic identity and values: We should recognize the challenge to the identity and values of Muslims in Britain – and work to preserve these noble Islamic values, practice our deen with dignity and explain and invite others to it. There are many people here looking for something as an alternative, both personally and as an alternative in the geopolitical arena. Perhaps Allah will guide them through our example and words.
We must remember always that Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala is the one to rely upon and to ask for help and protection. He is ever watchful over all things.
And Allah has full power and control over His Affairs, but most people do not realize it. [Translated meaning of Qur’an 12:21]
This Monday (3/3/2014) will mark 90 years of the destruction of the Khilafah. We present a transcript of a Khutba/bayaan that can be given this Friday. It can also be printed off and given to your local Imam/Khateeb to help with his preparation in reminding the Muslims of their responsibility to re-establishing this great obligation.[PDF Version of Khutba]
Oh Brothers in Islam and men who take heed!
The Prophet of Allah and the best of creation صلى الله عليه وسلم described your situation today
يوشك أن تداعى عليكم الأمم من كل أفق كما تداعى الأكلة على قصعتها
قيل: يا رسول الله، أمن قلة بنا يومئذ؟ قال: أنتم يومئذ كثير، ولكن
تكونون غثاء كغثاء السيل ينتزع المهابة من قلوب عدوكم ويجعل في
قلوبكم الوهن قال: قلنا وما الوهن؟ قال: حب الدنيا وكراهية الموت
“The nations will fall upon you attacking you as those who fall upon a meal. They asked: O RasulAllah will that be because we are few in number. He replied: You will be in large number but you will be like the froth on the water and your hearts will be stricken by Wahan. They asked: What is Wahan? He replied: Love of dunya and fear of death.”
Ninety years ago, on Monday 3rd March 1924 (28th Rajab 1342AH), the world heard the news that Mustafa Kemal Attaturk had officially abolished the Khilafah. That night Abdul-Mejid II, the last Khaleefah of the Muslims, was bundled into a car with a suitcase of clothes and money and exiled from Turkey, never to return.
It was the day that the Colonialists uprooted with great venom and zeal the Nizam that the Prophet, the Beloved of Allah, Al Mustapha صلى الله عليه وسلم established in Madinah al Munawarrah 1400 years ago. Indeed the Hijrah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم became a tale of old.
1400 years of the rule of Allah, the Shariah, the Sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم was destroyed. It was a day when our women had no protector and our brothers were left unguarded.
The Imam which they had for over 1400 years- that protected this Ummah was absent. The enemies of Islam were successful in taking away the flag of Tawhid and Risalah from us.
RasulAllah صلى الله عليه وسلم described this protection as a shield in the hadith:
إنما الإمام جنة يقاتل من ورائه ويتقى به “
“Indeed, the Imam (Khaleefah) is a shield, from behind whom you fight and by whom you are protected.”[Muslim]
It was the day the Muslim Ummah as one Ummah lost her leadership. The Khilafah was replaced by countless weak states crossing the entire Muslim world to be ruled by tyrants and oppressors. These rulers have been there to guard the interests of the West and work to keep the Ummah divided.
The following days after the destruction of the Khilafah, in the House of Commons the British Foreign Secretary Lord Curzon said, “The situation now is that Turkey is dead and will never rise again, because we have destroyed its moral strength, the Caliphate and Islam.”
For the colonialists powers destroying the Khilafah was not enough. They wanted to ensure that the Khilafah could never arise again among the Muslims.
Not content in destroying the Khilafah the ones who had enmity towards Islam went further Lord Curzon said, “We must put an end to anything which brings about any Islamic unity between the sons of the Muslims. As we have already succeeded in finishing off the Caliphate, so we must ensure that there will never arise again unity for the Muslims, whether it be intellectual or cultural unity.”
So they began carving up our lands and gave us new names instead of calling us Muslim. They called us Egyptians, Indians, Saudi, Sudanese, Somali and so on. As they continue to even this day ripping our lands to shreds they called us Pakistani, Bengali and so on. To the extent they wanted us to be proud of these new identities and call for them and even fight for them.
Even though the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said, “He is not one of us who calls for ‘asabiyyah, (nationalism) or who fights for ‘asabiyyah or who dies for ‘asabiyyah.” [Abu Dawood]
But we stood behind these flags and were fooled into labelling ourselves by them. Even though Allah سبحانه وتعالى blessed us with the same brotherhood that the Sahabah had under the shade of Khilafah Rashidah
“And hold fast, all of you together, to the Rope of Allah and be not divided among yourselves, and remember Allah’s Favour on you, for you were enemies one to another but He joined your hearts together, so that, by His Grace, you became brethren, and you were on the brink of a pit of Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus Allah makes His Ayat clear to you, that you may be guided.” [3:103 TMQ]
Since the abolishment of the Khilafah, the Ummah has witnessed a succession of despotic rulers whose sole concern has been to please their masters. Such slavery has resulted in the great hardships of the Ummah. For example:
Poverty: A 2002 study by the Economist found that 1 out of 5 Arabs lives on less than $2 a day – and this was before the 2008 Financial Crisis.
Corruption: According to Transparency International, Muslim countries account for 8 of the 10 most corrupt countries that were surveyed.
War: tens of thousands killed in Afghanistan with hundreds of thousands killed in Iraq by western coalition forces.
The contrast of the current reality to that of the past, when Islam was implemented, is clear:
Economy: Under the Khilafah of Umar bin Abdul Aziz (rh), the State Treasury was overflowing with funds to the point that no person could be found to accept the Zakat.
Governance: Umar (ra) as the Khalifah, received some cloth and distributed it amongst the Muslims by giving them one piece each. It became apparent that he was wearing two pieces of cloth. Immediately, Salman al-Farsi (ra) said, “By Allah, we will not listen to you, because you prefer yourself to your people.” In response, Abdullah ibn Umar (ra) then explained that he gave his cloth to his father. Salman al-Farsi (ra) responded by saying: “Now we shall listen to you.”
When it came time to appoint the successor to Umar (ra), Umar (ra) did not appoint his son. Instead, Abdur Rahman bin Auf (ra) sought the opinion of the people of Madinah to determine whether Ali (ra) or Uthman (ra) should lead.
• Security: When the honour of Muslim women was violated by Roman soldiers, the Abbasid Khaleefah Mutasim (rh) mobilized an entire army to secure their safety and dignity. And when Muslim women were taken captive by the Mushrikeen of India, Muhammad Bin Qasim was dispatched to liberate those women and the land to the justice of Islam.
But today Brothers every day we witness more and more injuries to the Ummah.
Whether that be Syria, or Central African Republic
Whether it be Iraq or Afghanistan
Whether it be Kashmir or Palestine
Or whether it be Burma or Chechnya
The list of atrocities since 1924 has been endless but how will you respond
O Brothers in Islam!
The establishment of a Khaleefah is an obligation upon the Muslims. Performing this duty, like any of the duties prescribed by Allah سبحانه وتعالى upon the Muslims, an urgent obligation in which there can be no choice or complacency.
Negligence in performing this duty is a collective sin placed on this Ummah. The evidence that the appointment of a Khaleefah is obligatory upon all Muslims is found in the Quran, Sunnah and the Ijma’a (consensus) of the Sahabah. As for the Ayat they are numerous but to quote from surah Nisa verse 59:
“O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Apostle and those in authority from among you; then if you quarrel about anything, refer it to Allah and the Apostle, if you believe in Allah and the last day; this is better and very good in the end.”
Imam Mawardi in his Al Ahkam As Sultaniyya explains that the above verse obliges obedience to the authority and if one doesn’t exist one must establish a Khilafah in order to fulfil the command in the ayah.
As for the Sunnah, Nafi’a reported saying: “Abdullah ibn Umar said to me that he heard the Prophet (saw) saying:
من خلع يداً من طاعة لقي الله يوم القيامة لا حجة له، ومن مات وليس
في عنقه بيعة مات ميتة جاهلية “
‘Whosoever takes off his hand from allegiance to Allah سبحانه وتعالى will meet Him سبحانه وتعالى on the Day of Resurrection without having any proof for him, and whoso dies whilst there was no Bay’ah (allegiance) on his neck (to a Khaleefah), he dies a death of Jahiliyyah (ignorance).’”[Muslim]
As for the companions Ibn Khaldun stated in his al muqadimmah ‘Imaamah is wajib and its obligation is known by the consensus of the opinion of the companions of the Sahabah and the Tabi’een’….
Indeed the companions (may Allah be pleased with them) administered laws according to the laws of Islam.
And the Ulema from across the schools of Islamic thought were united upon this obligation.
Al-Juwayni said: ‘Muslims must have an Imam to lead them and that is the consensus of the opinion of the Ummah and Imams.’
Re-establishing the Khilafah Rashidah – the system of Islamic governance, education, courts, and other societal institutions based on the Qur’an and Sunnah –is the only way of bringing a system of government that will ensure we are ruled by the Justice of what Allah سبحانه وتعالى has revealed.
Allah سبحانه وتعالى has made the unity of the Islamic Ummah and the unity of the State as one of the vital issues in Islam.
It has been reported on the authority of Abu Said Al-Khudri (ra) that the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said:
إذا بويع لخليفتين فاقتلوا الْخر منهما
“If a Bay’ah has been taken for two Khulafaa’ kill the latter of them.” [Muslim]
Hence, he made the unity of the State a vital issue when he prohibited the plurality of the Khulafaa’ and ordered the death penalty for the one who insists on establishing multiple leaders within the Islamic State after being advised against it.
Now that the Islamic State no longer exists, these ahadith indicate the level of priority we must give to ensure that the Ummah is united under the leadership of one Khaleefah. We must understand that the unity of the Ummah is a “matter of life and death” and, therefore, we must exert our utmost effort to re-establish the Khilafah Rashidah in the Muslim lands.
Allah سبحانه وتعالى has promised you a great victory when He سبحانه وتعالى said:
“Allah has promised those of you who have iman and do right actions that He will make them successors in the land as He made those before them successors, and will firmly establish for them their deen with which He is pleased and give them, in place of their fear, security. ‘They worship Me, not associating anything with Me.’ Any who are disbelievers after that, such people are deviators.” [24:55]
And the glad tiding of his Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم :
” تكون النبوة فيكم ما شاء الله أن تكون ثم يرفعها إذا شاء أن يرفعها ثم
تكون خلفة على منهاج النبوة فتكون ما شاء الله أن تكون ثم يرفعها إذا
شاء الله أن يرفعها ثم تكون ملكا عا ه ضاً فيكون ما شاء الله أن يكون ثم
يرفعها إذا شاء أن يرفعها ثم تكون ملكا جبرية فتكون ما شاء الله أن
تكون ثم يرفعها إذا شاء أن يرفعها ثم تكون خلفة على منهاج النبوة ثم
“There will be Prophethood for as long as Allah wills it to be, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be Khilafah on the Prophetic method and it will be for as long as Allah wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be biting Kingship for as long as Allah Wills, then He will remove it when He wills, then there will be oppressive kingship for as long as Allah wills, then he will remove it when He wills, and then there will be Khilafah upon the Prophetic method” and then he remained silent. (Narrated by Ahmad)
Western governments and their media slander the Prophet of Islam صلى الله عليه وسلم and portray the Khilafah as backward and as the aspiration of extremists. This is because they know it challenges their political, economic and military dominance of the Muslim world.
We as Muslims living in Britain have a duty to challenge lies about Islam, about Allah’s Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم about his system of governance, and about the Shari’ah of Islam. Indeed, we have a duty to offer people – who question the way the world is today – an alternative, by giving our neighbours, colleagues and others the Da’wah to Islam, to show them how the Islamic Aqeedah convinces the mind, agrees with man’s nature and has the capacity to solve humanity’s problems.
So Brothers respond and respond well, because your khair is only in Islam and by following the excellent Sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم . It’s time that you realise that RasulAllah صلى الله عليه وسلم directed you to that which will elevate you to your rightful position on the earth, an Islamic State led by a righteous Khaleefah.
Indeed your success is only in this so respond! Will you not respond when your Ummah is in tatters and your victory is guaranteed when you work towards it? Indeed your Iman in Allah demands that you respond! Allah سبحانه وتعالى states:
Dear Sisters, what does the 3rd of March 1924 mean to you? Is it just an ordinary date buried in the books of history? To me, it is the date that brings tears to my eyes and burns the heart – for this is the day 90 years ago that the Muslim woman lost her shield, her guardian, her protector – the Khilafah.
She lost her Islamic leadership that fought wars to guard her dignity, mobilising armies without hesitation to liberate her from oppressors. She lost rulers who shouldered her economic burdens, ensuring that she and her family were always provided for – leaders of taqwa who were servants to her needs, shedding tears out of concern for her welfare and over their great responsibilities towards her. They would carry food to her with their own hands when she was hungry and would refuse food for themselves until she was fed.
She lost her Islamic system under which she enjoyed the status of being the centre of attention with respect to care and protection, where her dignity was viewed as more precious than all the treasures of the world and men feared to utter a single word against her honour. It was a system that created prosperity in her land; a system under which she could elect her ruler and account him openly without fear of repercussion; a system which generated thousands of female scholars and pioneered the world in women’s education; a system under which the slave-girl became the mother of sultans; and a system where the Khalifah, judiciary and Qadi stood as guardians of her rights, protecting her from exploitation or abuse, and exerting all efforts to ensure that justice was hers as obliged by her Deen.
She lost her Islamic state which raised her status as a wife and mother, making the woman the cherished cornerstone of the family, bestowing upon her great worth, lifting from her the heavy burden of providing for herself, and commanding unconditional respect towards her as the nurturer and educator of the future generations. She lost a society in which her children were surrounded by the pure Islamic values and laws, and educated in Islamic homes and schools, creating youth of distinguished Islamic personalities who exemplified noble behavior andakhlaq (ethics). They were the devoted servants of Allah (swt), heroes of Islam, upright citizens of their state shouldering the burdens of their community and Ummah, carriers of the dawah and fierce adversaries to corruption and oppression, embodying the characteristics of leaders of humanity.
It was a state in which her status, rights, and good treatment became the envy of the women of the world.
And what did she gain over the last 9 decades in exchange for all this from the loss of her shield? Her life became one marred by death and destruction, poverty, indignity, destitution, and desperation. She came to be ruled by oppressive dictatorships which stole her wealth, ruled through terror, and imprisoned and killed her people for speaking the truth. She was forced to beg on streets, sell her body, or abandon her children to seek work in foreign states to feed herself and her family. She rummaged through bins for scraps of food and watched her children die from starvation. She became a tool to generate wealth for corporations and governments, the victim of traffickers, and the target of capitalists and criminals who exploited her dignity for profit. And her society became one plagued with insecurity, lawlessness, and violence, ruled by systems that cared nothing for her welfare, deprived her of her rights, and denied her justice.
Her land became occupied by foreign governments who destroyed her properties and slaughtered her family with impunity. She witnessed her children being butchered in front of her eyes by those harbouring hatred towards Islam. They violated her dignity and chased her from her home, while no army came to her rescue and no state provided her with a good life in a safe sanctuary. She became vilified and attacked for her Islamic dress and persecuted, imprisoned and tortured for speaking the Haq against her ruler under leaderships that criminalized the call to Islam.
And her role as a wife and mother became disregarded, devalued and undermined. Her children became exposed to the lewdness, immorality, and corruption of poisonous Western capitalist and liberal values imported freely, implemented and promoted by secular governments. Consequently, they became affected by the same scourge of individualism and materialism that afflicts Western societies and breeds disobedience and disrespect towards parents and elders. They became drawn to the Western identity and dress, embracing the destructive self-gratifying culture and lifestyle promoted by liberal personal and sexual freedoms, enticing many to a life of alcohol, drugs and harmful elicit relationships. The sanctity of the Islamic family unit became violated with the rise of adultery and divorce, leading to heartbreak for men, women and children alike.
Dear sisters, this is the painful, devastating aftermath of the events of the 3rd of March 1924, that fateful day when we lost our shield, our guardian, our protector. It should not be an insignificant date in history but one that is firmly etched in our minds. It is a date surrounded by sadness, and regret – one that should serve as a great reminder of just how much we lost as Muslim women when the System of Allah (swt), the Khilafah was removed from our lands.
Nine long dark years of unbearable suffering, indignity, and misery for the daughters of this Ummah is surely enough! It breaks the heart to reflect on the mercy, privileges, and countless blessings that Allah (swt) bestowed upon the Muslim woman under the shade of His System that have been resigned to the pages of history books or lie dormant in Islamic texts rather than gracing our lives. But now there is great hope that our shield is again rising from the ashes of its destruction to enlighten this world with its justice and sublime values as it once did. We witness the cool breeze of change as the Raya flag is raised from land to land across the globe and men and women alike take up its call.
Dear beloved sisters, we call you to be part of this great, momentous change of re-establishing this glorious Khilafah that will resume the magnificence of our Deen within our Muslim lands and with it return dignity, justice and protection to the daughters of Islam. We call you to be part of this work to give life to a state which taught the world the high status that a woman deserves and the great respect by which she should be treated. We call you to join your sisters of Hizb ut Tahrir in exerting all your efforts to fulfil this most vital of Islamic obligations of establishing the System of Allah upon this earth which will secure for you, Insha Allah, a high station and unimaginable rewards in the Hereafter.
Let these long, dark, painful decades that the daughters of this Ummah have endured in the absence of their shield be one that is confined to the books of history and the dawn of a new life take root that is full of honour and tranquillity under the shade of the noble Khilafah.
“Whoever follows My Guidance shall neither go astray, nor fall into distress and misery. But whoever turns away from My Reminder (That is, neither believes in the Qur’an nor acts on its orders) verily, for him is a life of hardship, and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Resurrection.” [TMQ Ta-Ha: 123-124]
Written for the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir by
Dr. Nazreen Nawaz
Member of the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir