Saturday, January 23, 2010

Why has the Muslim world failed to Develop?

The Muslim world has bewildered many experts who have researched the potential of the Islamic lands. Many have questioned how it is even possible that a people who are so rich and so plentiful in resources came to be so poor in reality. Many have an unfortunate tendency to compare the development of the West and conclude that the absence of liberal values will always act as an obstacle to industrial development in the Muslim world. There are a number of factors that have hindered development in the Muslim world, many of them originate from outside the Muslim world.
1.Colonialism – Much of this currant situation in the Muslim lands stems from the colonial era and is summed up best by David Fromkin, Professor and expert on Economic History at the University of Chicago: "Massive amounts of the wealth of the old Ottoman Empire were now claimed by the victors. But one must remember that the Islamic empire had tried for centuries to conquer Christian Europe and the power brokers deciding the fate of those defeated people were naturally determined that these countries should never be able to organize and threaten Western interests again. With centuries of mercantilist experience, Britain and France created small, unstable states whose rulers needed their support to stay in power. The development and trade of these states were controlled and they were meant never again to be a threat to the West. These external powers then made contracts with their puppets to buy Arab resources cheaply, making the feudal elite enormously wealthy while leaving most citizens in poverty." Throughout the 18th century European nations competed with each other in conquering territories, enslaving the host population and stripping the conquered people of their mineral resources. In November 1917 when the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia, Lenin’s communists discovered amongst the documents of the czarist foreign ministry a secret document that outlined plans to carve up the Ottoman Empire after the war (WW1) and the distribution of its constituent parts to the victorious allies. The details were worked out in February 1916 before the beginning of the war. The Sykes-Picot Agreement was a secret understanding between the governments of Britain and France defining their respective spheres of post-World War I influence and control in the Middle East. The region was carved up and given boundaries, dividing the people in the region who had lived as one nation for over 1000 years. Historian Mehran Kamrava outlined the geopolitics at the time, “It is here that geo-political boundaries clash violently with demographic realities, constructing a number of societal problems, many of which have not been resolved to this day. In some cases this was due to historical ignorance, but in others it was a deliberate choice to weaken the occupied people. France divided Lebanon and Syria against religious demographics in this very fashion to guard against anti-French resistance rallied under Sunni Muslim solidarity. The British created Transjordan from the western portion of Palestine and gave it an entirely separate government under the Hashemites. The national boundaries created during this time visibly outline those still seen today, and are the source of much conflict due to mistakes made in their drawing.”17 The effect of such colonialism has meant that although the colonial nations eventually physically departed from such lands their influence has remained and the colonised nations remain linked to the nations that enslaved them. It remains in the interests of the West even today to ensure the colonized nations do not develop and gain independence.

“But one must remember that the Islamic empire had tried for centuries to conquer Christian Europe and the power brokers deciding the fate of those defeated people were naturally determined that these countries should never be able to organize and threaten Western interests again. With centuries of mercantilist experience, Britain and France created small, unstable states whose rulers needed their support to stay in power. The development and trade of these states were controlled and they were meant never again to be a threat to the West.”
In Iraq Miles Copeland, a veteran CIA operative, through a number of his publications exposed the coups the US initiated which include bringing Saddam Hussain’s Baath party to power

2. During the colonial era most of the colonial nations made use of elements form the conquered territories to deal with the day-to-day running of colonies. In the post WW2 era although many of the conquered territories were given so called independence, an architecture that was nurtured over a generation was left in place ensuring the colonised nations remain linked to their masters. To maintain superiority, control and influence over the region, the West placed corrupt leaders into positions of power and supported the overthrow of those that were not seen as favourable. This has also served to keep the host populations at bay, in return for militarisation, power and personal wealth for the elite. The struggle to control access to important resources such as oil has even led to competition between the West. The links between the British and the house of Saud are no secret, it was the British Empire that brought the Saud family into power and provided them with the arms and technical help to dismember from the Khilafah. The Saud’s close work with the British empire at the time was repaid through giving Trans-Jordan to King Abdullah and Iraq to King Faisal. Similarly the US brought Gamal Abdul Nasser to power overthrowing the pro-British King Farook, during the same period in Operation Ajax both Britain and the US collaborated in bringing the Shah to power over-throwing the democratically elected Mohammed Mossadeq. In Iraq Miles Copeland, a veteran CIA operative, through a number of his publications exposed the coups the US initiated which include bringing Saddam Hussain’s Baath party to power. In the Far East for long the US provided military assistance to the Suharto regime. Such foreign interference which continues today has meant Western agents abandoned the nation’s interest and because rulers were never independent this stifled the prospect of any industrial development that would have benefited the nation. On the few occasions where a Western inspired coup turned its back on the West it was very quickly on the receiving end of a counter coup – as the Shah of Iran found in 1979. Such interference continues today and continues to act as an obstacle to any development in the Muslim world. A recent case of this was the Anglo-America plans to bring Benezir Bhutto to power in 2008. In order to replace General Musharraf dozens of meetings took place in the UK and Dubai between former US and UK ambassadors in order to agree the terms of her return. Sir Mark Lyall Grant former British ambassador to Pakistan led the negotiations and confirmed the meetings that took place between the Bhutto faction, the Musharraf faction and representatives of the US.18 Zardari confirmed the deal in September 2009.19 It is such agent rulers that have been a disaster for the Muslim world and will ensure no independent development will ever occur.

"The United States has viewed all multilateral organisations including the World Bank, as instruments of foreign policy to be used in support of specific US aims and objectives…US views regarding how the world economy should be organised, how resources should be allocated and how investment decisions should be reached were enshrined in the Charter and the operational policies of the bank."

3. The IMF and World Bank through their structural adjustment polices and many other highly questionable polices in countries such as Pakistan, Turkey, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Egypt have ensured such nations never develop the necessary fundamental industry to even start an industrial revolution. Both Bretton Woods institutes prescribed policies of concentrating on exports and focusing on repaying the loans borrowed. In the nations that comprise of the Middle East and North Africa 14% of regional export earnings go to debt service. In Lebanon, debt service accounts for 47% of the government's budget. Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey all spend more on debt service than they do on education; all spend twice as much on debt service than they do on health care. Sudan and Yemen are among the 41 countries identified as Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPCs). Pakistan continues reeling with external debts of over $50 billion. The loans and development advice provided has only caused more structural problems to the economies of the Muslim world and this has severely stunted any development, the loans in reality are the obstacle to development. The Brooking institute confirmed in a report "The United States has viewed all multilateral organisations including the World Bank, as instruments of foreign policy to be used in support of specific US aims and objectives…US views regarding how the world economy should be organised, how resources should be allocated and how investment decisions should be reached were enshrined in the Charter and the operational policies of the bank."20

4. The Muslim rulers and many who have positions in the governments across the Muslim world have been unable to develop anything in the realm of policy. This has resulted in no consistent basis form which policies could be derived giving the nation direction. As a result many of the Muslim economies are full of contradictions and the economy as a whole fails to move in a unified direction. Examples of this include:
Pakistan continues to import Coal even though it has the world’s largest Coal field and the world’s largest Coal reserves after the US.
Iran is flush with huge oil reserves and Gas, but due to a refinery shortage it imports gasoline and diesel to keeps its cars and trucks rolling.
Pakistan is the worlds 14th largest agricultural producer; however 52 million people live in poverty.
Saudi Arabia has been endowed with mineral wealth which is a prerequisite for industrialisation. Saudi Arabia has not only failed to develop but 20% of its population live under the poverty line.

5.The absence of any structured way of generating wealth and distributing wealth has created a situation where everyone in the Muslim world needs to fend for themselves and attempt to make the best out of a chaotic situation. This has compounded the problem further as many resort to bribery, stealing and fraud to make ends meet. This situation has allowed a minority in most of the Muslims lands to live in comfort and luxury at the expense of the rest of society. This situation means many of the elites refuse to invest in capital intensive industries and would rather place their wealth in the West and in the global financial markets.

6. Many of the Muslim economies are not built on their strengths. Many of the African nations have been forced to concentrate on single commodities rather than build their economies upon minerals and resources they have in abundance. Nigeria and Egypt have neglected their agricultural potential in order to build a service based economy. In the Middle East the abundance of fossil fuel has not translated into the development of industry, in fact countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states are so focused towards oil this has stopped the development of other sectors which would have created millions of jobs. Pakistan and Bangladesh’s strengths lay in their agricultural landscape and mineral resources however recent government have geared the economies around foreign direct investment (FDI) and telecoms. Whilst the Western word is dominated by the service sector this has been after industrialising. By not structuring the Muslim economies around their strengths such resources have been squandered and on most occasions have been at the centre of Western interests.

7. The removal of Islam as a comprehensive system thorough the Islamic system of governance – the Khilafah in 1924 has stunted development. This is because Islam was the trajectory that drove development in the Muslim lands. After the death of the Messenger (saw) the expansion of the Islamic lands resulted in many economic, political and social problems not previously confronted by the Messenger(saw). The expansion of the Khilafah into new lands brought it into contact with foreign cultures, customs, languages, traditions and political structures. These included Greek, Persian, Roman, Berber, Asian and Assyrian. This created internal challenges of distribution and production of wealth, rights of minorities, administration of an expanding ruling apparatus, judiciary, appointment of local governors and accountability. Such issues were tackled through the process of Ijtihad, leading to the development of some of the most accomplished scholars in Islamic history. Islam itself drove many developments, the need to find the Qibla for the five daily prayers led to developments in the compass. Islam acted as a comprehensive basis which continuously solved all problems Muslim encountered. It was in this scenario that many prematurely reasoned that all issues had been addressed, this understanding stalled creativity and was ebbed away only to be replaced by intellectual apathy. The industrial revolution created a number of bizarre views and opinions leading to the demise of the Khilafah as a system. Ever since Muslims have been unable to tackle scientific, economic and social developments in a coherent way. Islam was the catalyst that led to the development of the Muslim lands in history, its absence remains one of the most fundamental reason stifling development today.

The above is an excerpt from the book "Constructing an Industrialised Muslim World" by Adnan Khan

Views on the News - 22-01-2010

France accuses US of occupying Haiti

France accused the US of "occupying" Haiti on Monday as thousands of American troops flooded into the country to take charge of aid efforts and security. The French minister in charge of humanitarian relief called on the UN to "clarify" the American role amid claims the military buildup was hampering aid efforts. Alain Joyandet admitted he had been involved in a scuffle with a US commander in the airport's control tower over the flight plan for a French evacuation flight. "This is about helping Haiti, not about occupying Haiti," Mr Joyandet said. Geneva-based charity Medecins Sans Frontieres backed his calls saying hundreds of lives were being put at risk as planes carrying vital medical supplies were being turned away by American air traffic controllers. But US commanders insisted their forces' focus was on humanitarian work and last night agreed to prioritise aid arrivals to the airport over military flights, after the intervention of the UN.

US Does Not Have Capitalism Now: Stiglitz

Layers of money managers that don't bear the brunt of losses but walk away with big payouts when things go well have turned the US economy to a type of "ersatz capitalism," Joseph Stiglitz, Columbia University professor and Nobel laureate, told CNBC Tuesday. "An awful lot of people are not managing their own money," Stiglitz said. "In old-style 19th Century capitalism, I owned my company, I made a mistake, I bore the consequences." "Today, (at) most of the big companies you have managers who, when things go well, walk off with a lot of money. When things go bad the shareholders bear the costs," he said. Even worse, those giving the money to the companies are entities like pension funds that are managing money on behalf of other people, so there are "layers and layers of agency costs," Stiglitz said. It's a system where "you socialize the losses and privatize the gains," which is not capitalism, he said. There's "moral hazard everywhere," he added

American weapons stamped with bible reference used against Muslims

Muslim groups reacted angrily Wednesday after it emerged that the U.S. military is using combat rifle sights inscribed with coded Biblical references. Army officials have said they will investigate whether a Michigan defense contractor violated federal procurement rules by stamping references to Bible verses on the gun sights used by American forces to kill enemy fighters in Iraq and Afghanistan. The references have stoked concerns by a watch dog group about whether the inscriptions break a government rule that bars proselytizing by American troops. But military officials said the citations don't violate the ban and they won't stop using the tens of thousands of telescoping sights that have already been bought. The codes were used as "part of our faith and our belief in service to our country," Trijicon said."As long as we have men and women in danger, we will continue to do everything we can to provide them with both state-of-the-art technology and the never-ending support and prayers of a grateful nation," a company spokesman said on condition of anonymity.

London denies permission to be build the biggest Masjid in the country

Campaigners opposed to a “super-mosque” being built next to the 2012 Olympic site today told of their delight after the scheme was blocked. The Abbey Mills mosque and Islamic centre on a 7.3 hectare site in Stratford was to house 12,000 worshippers and would have been the biggest in Europe. But Newham council in London announced it will issue an eviction notice against the Islamist group behind it, Tablighi Jamaat, which has 80 million followers worldwide. Alan Craig, a Christian Peoples' Alliance councillor, said: “I'm delighted that the council has finally seen the light on this. It's a key site for the local community that would have been lost if the mega-mosque had been built. It is a big step forward, but a lot could still happen. The mosque has faced massive opposition from the local community and religious groups. More than 48,000 people have signed a petition against the development since the sect unveiled its plans for the site in 2007.

Britain plans to use its Afghan experience to fight future wars

The head of the Royal Navy has warned that land-locked Afghanistan is “not the only game in town” in a speech that could inflame rivalries between the services. Britain must also preserve a fleet capable of conducting far-reaching campaigns, said Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope. Gen Sir David Richards, the Army’s head, had that defense needed a "radical" shift in priorities away from "hugely expensive" equipment towards getting more troops on the ground. Sir David argued that Afghanistan is a template for wars of the future but Sir Mark said Britain had to look "beyond Afghanistan" and ensure it has the flexibility to deal with future conflicts. "We need to ensure that we, as a nation, have the strategic flexibility to deal not just with Afghanistan, but also the broad range of other threats and challenges to our national interests today and in the future," he said.

India’s military spending targets Pakistan and China

India's navy has started a $1.5 billion overhaul of its ageing Soviet-era fleet of aircraft, seeking to boost its air power in an Indian Ocean region where a growing China is threatening its traditional dominance. The investment is one of the biggest the Indian navy has made in recent years and reflects New Delhi's urgency to modernise its military, a move that rival Pakistan says could spark an arms buildup and destabilise an already roiled South Asia.India plans to buy 16 new MIG-29 fighter jets, half a dozen light combat aircraft, unmanned patrol planes and multi-role helicopters. Tenders for these will be floated soon, Indian officials said.The Indian navy is also upgrading its Sea Harrier fighter jets, IL-38 maritime anti-submarine warfare planes and acquiring five Kamov KA-31 patrol helicopters.“We are acquiring new fighters and helicopters to supplement a new aircraft carrier we are getting soon,” Commander P.V.S. Satish, the navy spokesman said in New Delhi on Thursday. Analysts said the upgrade of the navy was long due.“It is almost a matter of time before ships from China arrive in India's backyard,” said Brahma Chellaney, professor of strategic studies at New Delhi's Centre for Policy Research. India and China are locked in a battle to lead Asia. New Delhi fears China is creating an arc of influence in the Indian Ocean region, bolstering claims over what has traditionally been seen as India's backyard.

Is it forbidden to live a luxurious life in Islam?

Islam prohibited the individual from luxury, considered it a sin, and He warned the luxurious ones with torture.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى said:

وَأَصْحَابُ الشِّمَالِ مَا أَصْحَابُ الشِّمَالِ
فِي سَمُومٍ وَحَمِيمٍ
وَظِلٍّ مِّن يَحْمُومٍ
لَّا بَارِدٍ وَلَا كَرِيمٍ
إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَبْلَ ذَلِكَ مُتْرَفِين

"And those of the left hand: What of those of the left hand? In scorching wind and scalding water, and shadow of black smoke. Neither cool nor refreshing. For they were, before that, indulged in sinful luxury." [Al-Waqi'a: 41-45]

i.e. they were arrogant, who do what they wish.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى also said:

حَتَّى إِذَا أَخَذْنَا مُتْرَفِيهِم بِالْعَذَابِ إِذَا هُمْ يَجْأَرُونَ
"Till when We grasp the (town's) luxurious ones with punishment, behold! They started to supplicate." [Al-Mu'minun: 64]

The luxurious ones here means the arrogant tyrants.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى said also:

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا فِي قَرْيَةٍ مِّن نَّذِيرٍ إِلَّا قَالَ مُتْرَفُوهَا إِنَّا بِمَا أُرْسِلْتُم بِهِ كَافِرُونَ

"And We sent not unto any township a warner, but its luxurious ones declared: Lo! We are disbelievers in that which you bring to us." [Saba'a: 34]

The luxurious ones are those who are haughty (arrogant) towards the believers because of their high level of wealth and children.
Allah سبحانه وتعالى said:
وَاتَّبَعَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مَا أُتْرِفُواْ فِيهِ

"The wrongdoers followed that by which they were made surrounded with luxury." [Hud: 116]

What is meant by those who were surrounded with luxury is that they turned towards their whims i.e. followed their whims.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى said:

وَإِذَا أَرَدْنَا أَن نُّهْلِكَ قَرْيَةً أَمَرْنَا مُتْرَفِيهَا فَفَسَقُواْ فِيهَا
"And when We would destroy a township We send commandment to its tyrant folk (luxurious ones) and afterward, they commit abomination therein." [Al-Isra: 16]

What is meant by tyrant folk is their tyrants who live at ease.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى said:
وَأَتْرَفْنَاهُمْ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا
"We made them luxurious in the worldly life" [Al-Mu'minun: 33]

that is We made them insist on their tyranny out of their arrogance i.e. We made them arrogant.

Luxury (Taraf) linguistically means vanity and arrogance due to living a life of ease and comfort. When we say wealth made somebody luxurious, we mean it made him arrogant and corrupted him. That the person became luxurious means that he insisted on tyranny. He also transgressed and became haughty.

Therefore the luxury (Taraf) which the Qur'an condemned, and Allah سبحانه وتعالى prohibited and considered a sin is the Taraf that linguistically means haughtiness and arrogance due to ease of living, but not the ease of living itself. Therefore it is wrong to interpret Taraf as enjoying the wealth and ease of living by that which Allah سبحانه وتعالى provided, because ease of living and enjoying the provision of Allah are not condemned by Shari'ah.

Allah سبحانه وتعالى said
قُلْ مَنْ حَرَّمَ زِينَةَ اللّهِ الَّتِيَ أَخْرَجَ لِعِبَادِهِ وَالْطَّيِّبَاتِ مِنَ الرِّزْقِ
"Say: Who has forbidden the adornment of Allah which He has brought for His servants and the good things of His provision?" [Al-A'raf: 32]
At-Tirmidhi narrated from Abdullah ibn Amr who said:
‘The Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said, "Allah likes to see the signs of His favour (bounties) on His servant,'"

i.e. He loves for His servants to enjoy His favour and enjoy the good things He has provided for him.

But Allah سبحانه وتعالى hates the haughtiness, arrogance and transgression that may result from a life of ease. So Allah سبحانه وتعالى hates the life of ease if it produced haughtiness, transgression, arrogance and tyranny. Since a life of ease and comfort by the abundant wealth could lead some people to arrogance, tyranny and haughtiness; that is it creates Taraf in them, Islam prohibited that type of luxury. So Islam prevented corruption if it resulted from the abundance of wealth and children, making people arrogant and tyrannical. Islam prohibited that strongly.

So when it is said that Taraf is Haram it does not mean the life of ease is Haram, it rather means that arrogance which results from the easy use of wealth is Haram, as Taraf would mean linguistically, and as luxury (Taraf) would mean from the verses of the Qur'an.

The above is an excerpt from the book "Economic System in Islam" by Hizb ut-Tahrir

The Anthem of the Khilafah

Adopting a slogan/anthem that can be acclaimed to distinguish a certain group of people from others, or a certain state from others is one of the permissible matters. The Muslims in the past had a slogan which they used when they met their enemies on the battle field.

This was used at the time of the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم and by his agreement. They took the slogan of (Ha Mim, they are not helped) in the battle of the trench and Qurayzah, and the slogan of (You, the helped, bring death, bring death) in Banu Al-Mustaliq, and so on.

This is besides the favours bestowed by Allah سبحانه وتعالى upon man of the characteristics created in him such as hearing, sight and speaking, all of these are included in the evidences of ibaha. So, man sees, speaks and applauds whatever he wants unless there is specific evidence related to any of them, which then he must observe.

Therefore, it is allowed for the Islamic State to adopt a slogan with which it applauds and by which it distinguishes itself from other states, where it uses it in its relations with other states, and it accompanies the Khalifah in his visits to other heads of states or during their visits to him. It can also be used by the public in their occasions, where they applaud with it in their assemblies, public gatherings, schools and broadcasts, and the like.

In regards to the method of applauding, i.e. the intensity of the voice, the lowering, or speaking with or without a nasal sound etc, all of this is allowed, because the Muslims used to declaim their poems with an exciting voice in accordance with the occasion they were applauding.

The state has adopted that it should have an anthem, which it uses when necessary, and it accompanies the Khalifah in his official meetings with the heads of states. Additionally the Ummah would use it on certain occasions.

The following has been noted for the anthem of the second rightly guided Khilafah after its establishment by the permission of Allah سبحانه وتعالى:

1 - It should mention the fulfilment of the glad tidings of the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم regarding the return of the second guided Khilafah, and the rise again of the banner of the Uqab, the banner of the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم.

2 - It should mention the glad tidings of the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم when the Khilafah is established and the earth will bring out its treasures and the heaven will send down its blessings, and the earth will be filled with justice after being filled with tyranny.

3 - It should mention the conquests and spreading of goodness in all of the worlds regions with the Khilafah ruling over all, particularly the lands of the three mosques to which journeys are made: al-Masjid ul Haram, the prophetic masjid, and al-Masjid ul-Aqsa after uprooting the Jewish entity.

4 - It would be concluded by the return of the Ummah as Allah wanted her to be: The best Ummah brought to mankind, where its main goal is to attain the good pleasure of Allah سبحانه وتعالى, Who would honour her with His favour, Mercy and the High Garden of Al-Firdaws.

5 - Takbeer has to be repeated in it. This is because takbeer has a special impact in Islam and in a Muslim's life. It is takbeer that reiterates in their victories, and in their holidays, and on their tongues and is mentioned on every effective occasion.

The above is an excerpt from the book "Institutions of the Khilafah State" by Hizb ut-Tahrir.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Who will free Aafia Siddiqui?

In March 2009 two female US Journalists, Euna Lee and Laura Ling were seized by North Korean border guards while reporting for California-based Current TV. They were subsequently tried and sentenced to 12 years in prison for "hostile acts" and illegal entry into North Korea. After their imprisonment America worked tirelessly to get the women released and in August 2009 dispatched former US President Bill Clinton to speak with North Korea's Kim Jong Il. The meeting was productive and the two women were later released.

In March 2003 a women was also seized and imprisoned. Her name was Aafia Siddiqui. Like the US Journalists she was a women, she studied and worked in America and her three children were American citizens. But unlike the US Journalists captured six years later she was a Muslim and she had no leader to take care of her affairs.
This is her story.
Dr Aafia Siddiqui was born in Karachi, Pakistan, on March 2, 1972. She was one of three children of Mohammad Siddiqui, a doctor trained in England, and Ismet. She is a mother of three and also a Hafiz-e-Quraan. Aafia and her three children were seized by Pakistani intelligence agents in March 2003 and handed over to the Americans in Afghanistan where she was imprisoned in Bagram and repeatedly raped, tortured and abused for years. A report in the Pakistani Urdu press at the time said that Aafia and her three children were seen being picked up by Pakistani authorities and taken into custody.

Moazzam Begg, and several other former captives of the Americans reported that a female prisoner, "prisoner 650", was held at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan. Yvonne Ridley of wrote about "Prisoner 650" (Aafia) her ordeal of torture and repeatedly being raped for over four years.

"The cries of (this) helpless woman echoed (with such torment) in the jail that (it) prompted prisoners to go on hunger strike." Yvonne called her a "gray lady (because) she (was) almost a ghost, a spectre whose cries and screams continue to haunt those who heard her. This would never happen to a Western woman."

Both the Pakistan government as well as US officials in Washington denied any knowledge of Aafia's imprisonment until her plight was brought out in to the open and started to receive media attention. Trumped up allegations were then brought against her that she was involved in terrorism and a ludicrous claim that she managed to wrestle a gun off a US soldier and shoot at US officers.

On 4th August 2008, federal prosecutors in the US confirmed that Aafia Siddiqui was extradited to the US from Afghanistan where they allege she had been detained since mid-July 2008. The US administration claimed that she was arrested by Afghani forces outside Ghazni governor's compound with manuals on explosives and ‘dangerous substances in sealed jars' on her person. They further allege that whilst in custody she shot at US officers (none being injured) and was herself injured in the process.

On 7th August 2008 an article in the The News exposed some of the treatment Aafia had been subjected to whilst in American custody.

one of her kidneys had been removed
her teeth had been removed
her nose had been broken, and improperly reset
her recent gunshot wound had been incompetently dressed, was oozing blood, leaving her clothes soaked with blood.

An August 11, 2008, a Reuters report stated that she had appeared at her court hearing in a wheelchair, and that her lawyers pleaded with the judge to make sure she received medical care. Elizabeth Fink, one of her lawyers, told the Judge:

"She has been here, judge, for one week and she has not seen a doctor, even though they (U.S. authorities) know she has been shot."

Aafia's Lawyer Elizabeth Fink told a federal judge in New York that Aafia shows signs of having been imprisoned and treated inhumanely for a long period of time. According to documents described in court by Fink, Aafia told prison staff that she feared her son was being starved and tortured, and asked them to take food off her tray and send it to her son in Afghanistan.

Another of her lawyers, Elaine Whitfield Sharp, "We do know she was at Bagram for a long time. It was a long time. According to my client she was there for years and she was held in American custody; her treatment was horrendous."

Aafia remains in a US detention facility in New York, in poor health, subjected to degrading and humiliating strip searches and cavity searches whenever she receives a legal visit or appears in court. She has subsequently refused to meet with counsel. It has been reported that she may suffer from brain damage and that a part of her intestine may have been removed. Her lawyers say her symptoms are consistent with a sufferer of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The trial of Aafia Siddiqui will start this week.

In the absence of the Khilafah she along with every other Muslim in the world is effectively stateless and as prophesised by the Messenger صلى الله عليه وسلم we are like froth and scum that is carried down by a torrent of water.

"The People will soon summon one another to attack you as people when eating invite others to share their food." Someone asked, "Will that be because of our small numbers at that time?" He صلى الله عليه وسلم replied, "No, you will be numerous at that time: but you will be froth and scum like that carried down by a torrent (of water), and Allah will take the fear of you from the breasts (hearts) of your enemy and cast al-wahn into your hearts." Someone asked, "O Messenger of Allah, what is al-wahn?" He صلى الله عليه وسلم replied, "Love of the world and dislike of death." [Abu Dawud and Ahmad]

It's wahn that led the Pakistani authorities to kidnap and handover a Muslim women to the Americans even though the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said, "A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim, so he should not oppress him, nor should he hand him over to an oppressor. [Bukhari]

It's wahn that prevented any ruler in the Muslim world lifting a finger to help protect the honour of a Muslim women and free not just Aafia but the thousands of Muslims incarcerated in Guantanamo, Bagram, and secret CIA detention centres even though the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم said: "Indeed it is obligatory upon the Muslims to free their captives or to pay their ransoms."

It's wahn that leads the rulers in the Muslim world to imprison, torture and abuse hundreds of thousands of sincere Muslims in their dungeons even though Hisham bin Hakeem said; "I bear witness that I heard the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم say; 'Allah will punish those who punish the people in the Dunya.'" [Muslim]

We must remember that we were not always stateless. When the Islamic State existed in the past the honour of Muslim women was protected and the Muslim prisoners were freed.

During the time of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم a Jewish goldsmith of Banu Qaynuqa abused the honour of a Muslim woman by tying the edge of her garment causing her private parts to become uncovered. A Muslim man happened to be there and killed the man. The Jews then retaliated by killing that Muslim. The man's family called the Muslims for help and the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم sent an army against them and after a 15-day siege expelled the entire tribe from Madinah.

Imam ibn Athir records in ‘Kamil' the famous story of a Muslim woman who was captured by the Romans and held in a place named ‘Amuriyyah. Not content with only capturing her they tried to dishonour her as well. Frightened and alone she called out the name of the Khaleefah, "[Ya Mu'tasim] Oh Mu'tasim." A man witnessed this incident and rushed to the Khaleefah informing him of what had happened. When he heard the plight of this woman he responded bravely, "Labbaik [I am here at your call]." He prepared a large army and set off for battle and to rescue the woman. Mu'tasim's army conquered the enemy and entered ‘Amuriyyah. After destroying the enemy stronghold, they came to the woman and freed her.

Khaleefah Umar bin Abdul-Aziz sent a letter to the Muslim POWs in Constantinople. He told them:

"You consider yourselves to be POWS. You are not. You are locked in the cause of Allah. I would like you to know that whenever I give something to the Muslims I give more to your families and I am sending so and so with 5 dinars for each one of you and if it wasn't that I fear the Roman dictator would take it from you I would have sent more. I have also sent so-and-so to secure the release of every single one of you regardless of what the cost would be. So rejoice! Assalamu Alaykum."
Oh America and its allies!

Today you murder our men, women and children, torture and imprison us and steal our resources. But you must realise this is only a temporary situation. The Islamic revival is gathering pace and the wahn is slowly melting away through the interaction with the strong Islamic thoughts. You know this which is why you launched the war on terror and why you spend $billions occupying our lands.

When the victory of Allah سبحانه وتعالى arrives and the Muslim lands unite under one Khaleefah, be under no illusion that the Khilafah will utilise all its political, economic and military might to free the Muslim prisoners and protect the honour of our women.

Q&A: The Next Egyptian President

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Question: Recently there has been some analyses in the media, especially the European and the American media regarding the next Egyptian president to succeed Hosni Mubarak who reportedly will not be renominated for the presidential elections scheduled in 2011 C.E. These reports have cited the names of Gamal Mubarak, Ayman Nour, Mohammed El-Baradaei and Amr Moussa among others, and among them Gamal Mubarak and Ayman Nour’s names are being touted as favourites...

We know that Jamal Mubarak has his loyalties to the US just like his father, does Ayman Nour also shares the same loyalty especially because he was released from his previous detention just before Obama’s visit to Egypt? Or is Ayman Nour loyal to the Europeans? If this is correct, then does this mean that Europe and especially Britain are looking forward to get a foothold in Egyprt after all these years of American stronghold in Egypt?

Answer: Indeed political insight into the happenings in Egypt strongly suggest that the person who appears to be most favourite to succeed Hosni Mubarak is Gamal Mubarak and this view is strengthened by the following indicators:

First: The United States in keen to see Gamal succeed his father and the follwing indicate its keenness:

1. He understands the position that the US desires and he is their next nominee. But the US is not letting its position on Gamal become know publicly so as not to give that impression and wants him to come through the maneuverings and manipulations of the democratic process. This is because if Gamal is seen to a US man, his chances will be eroded and his rivals be strengthened. It has therefore invited Gamal to visit America just as it has invited the other potential candidates so that it all looks routine and normal! On the other hand, if he was not supported by the US, it would have carried all sorts of smear campaigns against him for which it has more than sufficient evidence on paper. This is because America being a self-proclaimed champion of democracy can’t afford to be seen as fostering and encouraging dynastic rule which is essentially anti-democracy and also because such evidence, if it is allowed to come into the open, will among other things, also expose his involvement in pilfering huge wealth as a result of his father being being at the helm of authority.

2. Gamal Mubarak visited United States on 5th March, 2009 and met the leading figures of the US Congress including Senator John Kerry, the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee as well as Howard Peerman, the Chairman of House of of Representative’s Committee on International Affairs.

3. On 17th November, 2009, the ‘Arabian Business‘ newspaper carried a report that the US Congress expects Gamal Mubarak, the son of President Hosni Mubarak and the Political Secretary of the National Party to be the party’s nominee for the presidential elections in the year 2011.

4. The US fears that Hosni Mubarak may die before the next elections and is preparing for such an eventuality and grooming some of its potential people of which the most likely at present is Gamal Mubarak. He is trusted by the Americans as he has worked at the Cairo branch of Bank of America and later became manager of its branch in London. He was awarded honorary membership of the Rotary Club which is a front organisation of the American Freemasons.

Secondly: The Egyptian Regime is making all efforts to groom Gamal to be the President after his father, and this is evident in the following:

1. Gamal Mubarak was promoted to such positions where decision-making is involved, for instance, he was made head of the political affairs committee of the National Party and was also being the position of Asst. Secretary General of the ruling party. Of late there have been a vocal campaign by highly placed officials aimed at nominating him to lead the country. Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazeef said: “Gamal Mubarak is nominated to succeed his father in the next presdential elections in 2011.“ [Radio Holland: 28.10.2009].

2. The Egyptian regime has provided several oppurtunities and authority to Gamal Mubarak in order to project him, make him acceptable by the people and cover-up his evil past and present by constructing a chining aura around him. Gamal began to show concern for people’s problems and issues and project himself as one who was considerate towards the poor, concerned about students problems. He even began to use internet following Obam’s footsteps to answer the queries posed by the youth. The regime fully cooperated with him like solving the issue of live-broadcasting of the Egyptian League matches for the 2009 season and providing subsidy for cement in the same year. Groups and organsiations sprouted who voiced support for his succession as president; “Yes“ group which was headed by a coptic christian named Mamdouh Zakhari Gergis; “Liberation“ group circulated leaflets and stickers with the caption “Gamal Mubarak...Sweet Dream for a Beautiful Country“. The founder of this group named Aadil Sayyid who is a young doctor says the group was formed in 2006 and worked secretly in keeping with security advices and has a membership strength of 40,000, wherein the oldest member is below thirty years of age with a majority of them beong unversity students. [al-Jazeerah“10.09.2007]. Apart from this, a group of youth led by a former member of the national parliament who waer shirts incribed with slogans such as “Love, Sinserity and Loyalty...Hallmarks of Gamal Mubark“. This was at a rally held at al-Najah village of the Buhairah province where Gamal and a group of ministers addressed the youth. [al-Jazeerah:03.09.2009]. All this is taking place right under the noses of the regime, or even planned and sponsored by them.

From all of this it is evident that the regime, or more precisely, the United States is providing conditions to facilitate Gamal Mubarak’s ascension as the next president to succeed his father.

Ayman Nour: As for him, he appears to be inclined towards Europe and Britain to be specific. It is therefore unlikely that the US-backed regime would support him to come tp power as the president so long as America’s influence is strong in Egypt. This view is supported by the following factors:

1. Ayman Nour began his political career in the “New Wafd Party“ and was a close confidante of its president Mohammed Fouad Siraj eddin. Ayman Nour also was an assistant editor of the party’s newspaper. It is well-known that the Wafd Party bears loyalty to Britain. It is reported that many from the Wafd party left to join the Misr al Ghad (Egypt Tomorrow) party and the Egypt 2000 party which was established in October 2004. Though these parties have some minor differences with the Wafd party, nevertheless they share a common loyalty to Britain.

2. The Egyptian regime used its power to create hindrances for the Hizb al Ghad to the extent that this party was split just a year after its founding, and the splintered faction was led by the party general secretary Moussa Mustafa who became the new president and Ayman Nour and his wing of followers were seperated, Moussa commenting on Ayman Nour said: “What Ayman Nour advocates clearly endangers public secuity and the constitution in jeopardy“ [al-Jamhouriyyah al-Misriyyah newspaper: 13.10.2009]. It is evident from this that the Egyptian regime was behind the split, since what Moussa attributed to Ayman Nour’s intentions about jeopardising the constitution and harming public security is clearly a governmental allegation!

3. He opposed a number of detentions carried out by the regime on various grounds, but it was clear that Ayman Nour worked overtly and covertly against the regime and its policies...therefore he demanded amendments to the Egyptian constitution or setting a specific time-limit of a one year period transition during which aconstituent assembly be called to draft a new constitution with no participation of the officials of the transition in the constituent assembly. From this it is evident that Ayman Nour wanted serious changes in the regime, infact his slogan itself was: “Hope lies in Change“.

4. The Europeans intenslydemanded his release and had objected to his detention right from day one of his arrest and had even maintained contact with him during his dentention period. The Reuters reported on February 1st, 2007: “Edward MacMillan Scott, the head of the European Parliament and its special envoy for its “Democratic and Human Rights“ tried yesterday to meet Ayman Nour but was prevented from seeing him though he was made to wait for an hour and a half. MacMillan Scott called on the European Union to take a more firm and stronger view towards the Egyptian regime and pointed to the fact that the regime had violated Ayman Nour’s liberties“. Al-Jazeerah had cited a report by the German News Agency that “Ayman Nour had stated while in prison that he had written to Louis Moreno Okambo the Prosecutor-General of the International Court of Justice on 15.08.09 complaining about complaining against Egyptian officials, including Egyptian President Mubarak, Minister of Interior Habib el-Adli and the Public Prosecutor Abdel Megid Mahmoud in relation to his detention…”. This complaint is a strong pressure brought against the Egyptian regime by the EU since the International Court of Justice is backed by Europe. Further, the Konrad-Adenauer Foundation released a series of reports during 2008 clearly stating in them the fake allegations brought against Ayman Nour by the Egyptian regime. This itself demostrates Europe’s concern for Ayman Nour and their support for him.

5. The statements issued in this regard by the US officials were routine statements as required by their policies, but they did not include a serious demand of his release from prison. However when the Eurpoean campaign for Ayman Nour’s release was intensified and came to the International Court, the US feared for the Egyptian regime which is its ally and was concerned that this issue may add frther to the issue of Omar al-Basheer. Therefore, the US high-pitched its calls for Human rights and democracy durring the run-up to Obama’s visit to Egypt and its media demanded release of the detainees and mentioned Ayman Nour’s name in the list in the hope that this move will help in making Obama’s visit a success...The Washinton Post newspaper then wrote on 26.02.2009 that: “Dr. Ayman Nour, the leader of the Ghad Party must be released, and that it is neccessary if the Egyptian President wanted to meet Obama in a cordial atmosphere“. Only days after this, Ayman Nour was released. This release, coming a few months before the term was aimed at diffusing the EU pressure and to demosntrate that it was the US that held effective power in Egypt, and not the Europeans...

Thus it is evident that Ayman Nour is allied to the Europeans and especially Britain. His political grooming in the Wafd party as well as the nurturing of his former leader Mohammed Foud Siraj eddin who also was allied to the British. He was promoted to be the assistant editor of the Wafd party’s newspaper, and European politicians and newspapers as well as the Internal Court have supported him. All these indicators support the overwhelming notion that he is allied to the British. This means that the Egyptian regime allied to the US will not allow him to succeed as the president and therefore the person most likely to succeed Hosni Mubarak as the Republic’s president is Hosni’s son Gamal Mubaral, i.e so long as the US influence in Egypt is stong.

28th Dhul Hijjah, 1430 A.H
15th December, 2009 C.E

Reflection:The Divine Rule

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا اسْتَجِيبُوا لِلَّهِ وَلِلرَّسُولِ إِذَا دَعَاكُمْ لِمَا يُحْيِيكُمْ
"Oh you who believe, answer the call of Allah and the Messenger when he calls you to that which gives you life".[TMQ 8:24]

In the tafseer of Al-Qurtubi and Ibn Kathir it says about the above verse, "Respond to what is good for you and what makes you better and that is obeying Allah and following the Qur’an and [what is in it] from the obligations. Doing this will result in success and eternal life". In other words, we are required to obey the commands of Allah (swt). This includes fulfilling the fardh (obligatory) actions that Allah (swt) has prescribed for us and not doing that which He has made haram (prohibited) for us. Fullfilling one’s fardh and steering clear of the haram is the only way to attain success in this life and in the akhira (Hereafter).
The Hukm Shari’i: The Guidance from Allah (swt)

The criterion of what is lawful (halal) and unlawful (haram) are set by the Qur'an and Sunnah and is referred to as Hukm Shari’i (the Divine Law). The Ahkam Shariah (plural of Hukm Shari’i) is a source of joy for the believers Allah (swt) revealed:

فَمَنِ اتَّبَعَ هُدَايَ فَلَا يَضِلُّ وَلَا يَشْقَى
“Whoever follows My guidance, he shall not go astray nor be unhappy.”[TMQ 20:123]

Through the Shariah, Allah (swt) has guided us in our thoughts and actions. Allah (swt) has also assured us in the following ayat that any obligation that he has prescribed for the believer is within his or her reach. Allah (swt) revealed:

لَا يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ

"Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope. He gets reward for that which he has earned, and he is punished for that [evil] which he has earned."[TMQ 2:286]

Wahy: The Believers’ Sole Reference

The Muslims are commanded, in regard to their actions, to refer to the wahy (revelation) from Allah (swt) alone and to conduct their affairs in accordance with the commandments within this legislation. This guidance is all the believer needs as it is a comprehensive guidance for all matters – nothing is left out. Allah (swt) revealed:

وَنَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ تِبْيَانًا لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةً وَبُشْرَى لِلْمُسْلِمِينَ
“We have revealed the Book to you explaining clearly everything, and a guidance and mercy and good news for those who submit.”[TMQ 16:89]

Allah (swt) has also commanded us to take what the Messenger of Allah has ordered and to abstain from what he has prohibited. Allah (swt) also commanded us to refer our judgement to the Messenger of Allah (saw), namely to what the Messenger of Allah (saw) has brought:

فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ
''No by your Lord, they shall not become true believers until they make you judge in all disputes amongst them.''[TMQ 4: 65]

وَمَا آَتَاكُمُ الرَّسُولُ فَخُذُوهُ وَمَا نَهَاكُمْ عَنْهُ فَانْتَهُوا
''And take whatever the Messenger has brought to you and refrain from whatever he has forbidden you.''[TMQ 59:7]

Furthermore, the Messenger of Allah (saw) has explicitly forbidden us from taking anything (e.g. prayers, political system, economic system, etc) other than what he brought.

Aisha (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said:
“He who introduces in our order something that is alien to it, must be rejected.”[Muslim]

This makes it clear that we cannot adopt ideas, actions and laws that are alien to Islam.
Consequently, when we as Muslims approach an issue that is new to us, we should first ask ourselves: "What is the hukm (ruling) by Allah (swt) on this matter?” Once we have sufficient evidence indicating that the action is allowable – based on Qur’an, Sunnah, Ijma As-Sahabah and Qiyas – then, and only then, should we proceed to perform the action. In other words, we cannot assume that an action is mubah or halal by default or conversely assume an action is haram by default. Rather we can only know its status when examining it in the light of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Furthermore, if we are unsure about the ruling on a specific action, we must abstain from that action until we know whether it is halal or haram to conduct that action.
Ahkam Shariah: Categories of Actions

Allah (swt) has given us the tools in the Ahkam Shariah to determine which actions are of a higher priority than others (e.g. a fardh action is higher priority than a mandoub action), as well as which actions should be avoided altogether. Every action can be categorized into one of the following five categories:

1. Fardh (obligatory): The one who performs the action will be rewarded by Allah (swt) and the one who neglects it will be punished. Example: the five daily prayers, fasting in the month of Ramadan and paying the Zakat.

2. Mandoob (recommended): The one who does the action will be rewarded and the one who neglects it will not be punished. Example: praying the Sunnah before Dhuhr or fasting on Mondays and Thursdays.

3. Makrooh (undesirable): The one who refrains from the action will be rewarded and the one who does it will not be punished. Example: drinking water while standing and eating onion before coming to the masjid.

4. Mubah (permisable): An action that does not incur a punishment or earn a reward. It is neither encouraged, nor is it discouraged. Example: sitting, standing, walking, and so on.

5. Haram (prohibited): The one who performs the action will be punished and the one who refrains from doing it will be rewarded. Example: murder, dealing in riba (interest), adultery, drinking alcohol and gambling.

Being grateful to Allah (swt) for the Guidance

When reflecting on the categories of actions, we should glorify and praise Allah (swt) and be grateful to Him for granting us this guidance. Without it, there would be no way for us to know what actions to undertake and the relative importance of each action. Only Allah (swt), the Creator of all things, has the ability to determine how to categorize what actions are obligatory, recommended, permissible, not recommended or prohibited. Human beings, on the other hand, have a limited understanding of reality, vary in their abilities to assess reality, are prone to influences from their environment and can make different conclusions about reality (even if they have the same abilities). Consequently, when human beings try themselves to categorize actions in a similar manner, they end up with legal systems that are contradictory, flawed, and unjust.

However, following the guidance of Allah (swt) does not mean that we will have a carefree life without any hardship.

It is apparent that adhering to the ahkam these days is a test for Muslims living any where in the world. Despite these challenges, we must abide by the commandments of Allah (swt) regardless of the consequences. During the time of the Prophet (saw) when the Ayat prohibiting Khamr (intoxicants) were revealed, the Muslims stopped drinking at once. Some of the Muslims went so far as to induce vomit. They also drained all the containers of alcohol – regardless of the money it cost them. This is a clear indication of how Muslims should follow the ahkam regardless of the results and consequences. We, as Muslims, should be strong and patient and adhere to His ahkam. For us life is a test, hence we should live it according to the orders of Allah (swt) by following his ahkam. Allah (swt) revealed:

وَلَقَدْ فَتَنَّا الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ فَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا وَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ الْكَاذِبِينَ
“Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: "We believe," and will not be tested?” [TMQ 29:3]
Living without the Hukm being implemented.

Indeed, the Ummah continues to face disastrous situations as a result of not implementing the ahkam of Islam. We must work to resume the Islamic way of life in the Muslim lands and implement all the ahkam of Islam by working to re-establish the Khilafah Rashidah, which will implement the Deen based on the method of the Prophet (saw). As noted earlier, the adherence to the ahkam of Islam is the key.
We must work for the implementation of this Deen and the adherence of Allah’s (swt) command and implement His ahkam so that we will be rewarded with Jannah (Paradise) and the pleasure of Allah (swt) and saved from Jahnnam (Hell Fire) and the wrath of Allah (swt).
Indeed, Paradise is the reward for exerting ourselves in the path of Allah (swt) by implementing Islam and following His ahkam the way they were revealed:

وَسَارِعُوا إِلَى مَغْفِرَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ وَجَنَّةٍ عَرْضُهَا السَّمَوَاتُ وَالْأَرْضُ أُعِدَّتْ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ

“And march forth in the way (which leads to) forgiveness from your Lord, and for Paradise as wide as are the heavens and the earth, prepared for Al-Muttaqûn”
[TMQ 3:133]
May Allah (swt) make us from those who fear Him most and follow his commands and imitate the steps of the Prophet (saw) by implementing the Fardh, performing as much as we can of the Mandoob, staying away from the Haram and avoiding the Makrooh. May Allah (swt) reward us with the highest reward and, in the Akhira, quench our thirst with a drink that will remove our thirst forever. Ameen.


Friday, January 01, 2010

The misuse of the principle of Dhuroora (necessity)

Unfortunately today some people misuse Islamic principles in order to justify clearly prohibited actions. One of the most commonly misapplied principles is that of Dhuroora (necessity). People often use it to justify taking interest based loans, working in jobs that involve haram, engaging in bribery, supporting kufr political parties and a variety of other prohibited actions.

They attempt to justify this from Islamic texts by saying that when your dying of hunger it becomes permitted to eat pork and other haram foods. From this they generalise and say therefore we can break the Shariah rules under any type of difficulty.

It is true that Allah said:

إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَيْتَةَ وَالدَّمَ وَلَحْمَ الْخِنْزِيرِ وَمَا أُهِلَّ بِهِ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ فَمَنِ اضْطُرَّ غَيْرَ بَاغٍ وَلَا عَادٍ فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ

"He has forbidden you Al-Maytah (meat of a dead animal), blood, flesh of swine, and any animal which is slaughtered as a sacrifice for other than Allah. But if one is forced by necessity without willful disobedience and not transgressing, then there is no sin on him." [al-Baqara, 2:173]

So, the person who is in dire need can eat of what he finds from these prohibited food which is enough to keep him alive.

It must be understood that these rules are specific rules with specific evidences, from them we cannot generalize and say that we are allowed to bend the shariah rules on the basis of any hardship, to do this would be haram.

We must be careful here when we talk about the principle of "necessity ". Let us refer to what the classical ulema have said about this matter.

Imam al Razi Al Jassas al Hanafi says in his Ahkam al Quran (vol 1/159): "Here the meaning of necessity purports the fear for life and limb when someone avoids foods (that are in essence forbidden) ....."

Ibn Qudamah al Maqdasi al Hanabli in his Al Mughni says (9/331): "If it has become established, then the necessity that is expedient is the type that leads to starvation if the food is left".

He continues to say: "...The reason for the allowance of is the need to preserve the self from destruction because this Maslaha is more beneficial than the benefit of avoiding the impure...."

Imam Abu Hamid Al Ghazali Al Shafi says in his Wasit (7/168): "As for necessity we imply the state that probably will lead to the person's destruction, If, for example he does not eat and similarly if he fears that an illness would lead to death....."

Imam Ibn Juzi al Maliki says: "...As for necessity it is the fear of death and it is not conditional that someone is patient to such an extent that he witnesses his own death". (Al Quanin al Fiqhia p116)

Clearly then we are talking about an acute scenario that is particular. Even this has certain constraints according to many of the Ulema.

(1) That there is no other means to remove this overbearing situation.

(2) That this does not affect the rights of others. In other words we try to look for an exit that does not affect others. At least in principle to such an extent that a number of Ulema forbid Muslims to eat dead human flesh in matters of starvation because this affects the rights of others i.e. those of the dead.

Another very common example is the sinking ship scenario. What if we are going to sink because of the excessive weight of the passengers, do we throw a few overboard to their doom to save the majority? The vast majority refuse this scenario of utilitarianism in Dhuroora.

Another example is the Muslim prisoner shield that is put up in defence of a non Muslim army. This example is typically allowed for as a Dhuroora on a state level but more importantly because there are textual indications that allow collateral damage if it cannot be avoided. Some scholars understand this point as a Duroorah Kulia i.e. an all encompassing Duroorah (It applies to the Muslims as a whole rather than some at the expense of others)

(3) Uttering Kufr by force is a Rukhsa (legal permission) and it is better according when forced on pains of torture and death to avoid it.

Imam Suyuti in Ashbah wal Nadhair page 63 says: "Eating the flesh of the dead in times of necessity takes precedence over taking someone else's money (to purchase food)."

The scholars also differed on whether you can take drink alcohol when you are dying from thirst. Imam Shafi thought that alcohol makes the thirst even worse. Others also differed on whether one can take medication that has forbidden elements in it. Finally even some scholars did not consider it a sin if someone refused to take anything forbidden at all. (See Majmu'at al Bu'uth al Fiqhea by Dr Abdul Karim Zaydan pages 141-214)

Anyway all four schools of thought and in fact the consensus agree that Dhuroora in the fiqhi sense makes some things that are forbidden allowed in an acute scenario. Remember this is not a norm but for very particular severe situations. It cannot be made a law. Certainly it cannot lead to a normal rule for an entire population.

So one cannot claim that they have to take an interest based mortgage to buy a house on the pretext of necessity as they can rent or stay with relatives. Similarly someone can't claim that he has to pay bribery to achieve his interests as he can achieve them in a legitimate way even if it is more difficult. Someone working in a job that involves haram such as in a restaurant where they would have to serve alcohol or as a cashier in a bank where they would have to receive and give riba (usury) can get another job that is halal even if it is lesser in pay.

The countless ayat and ahadith ordering us to undertake our actions according to the commands and prohibitions of Allah سبحانه وتعالى can't just be washed away based upon some difficulty or hardship.

الَّذِينَ إِذَا أَصَابَتْهُمْ مُصِيبَةٌ قَالُوا إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ

أُوْلَئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَاتٌ مِنْ رَبِّهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ وَأُوْلَئِكَ هُمْ الْمُهْتَدُونَ

"And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, lives and fruits, but give glad tidings to As-Sâbirin (the patient ones.)." [al-Baqarah:155-157]

We should listen to the warning of the Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وسلم when he said:

«بادروا بالأعمال فتناً كقطع الليل المظلم يصبح الرجل مؤمناً ويمسي كافراً، ويمسي مؤمناً ويصبح كافراً يبيع دينه بعرض من الدنيا»

"Be prompt in doing good deeds (before you are overtaken) by turbulence which would be like a part of the dark night. During (that stormy period) a man would be a Muslim in the morning and an unbeliever in the evening or he would be a believer in the evening and an unbeliever in the morning, and would sell his Deen for worldly goods" [Sahih Muslim: Kitab ul-Iman, 213]

Allah سبحانه وتعالى says:

وَمَا كَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ وَلاَ مُؤْمِنَةٍ إِذَا قَضَى اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ أَمْرًا أَنْ يَكُونَ لَهُمْ الْخِيَرَةُ مِنْ أَمْرِهِمْ وَمَنْ يَعْصِ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ ضَلاَلاً مُبِينًا.

"It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allâh and His Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allâh and His Messenger, he has indeed strayed in a plain error." [al-Ahzaab:36]

The Evil of Craving for Wealth

Imam Ahmad, An-Nasaa'i, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Heban in their Saheeh report the hadeeth of Ka'b ibn Malik al-Ansari (ra) of the Prophet (saw), who said:

"Two hungry wolves let loose among sheep are not more harmful than a person craving after wealth and status is to his Deen."
At- Tirmidhi said, "It is hasan saheeh."

It is also reported from the Prophet (saw) in the hadeeth of Ibn `Umar, Ibn `Abbaas, Abu Hurairah, Usama ibn Zayd, Jaabir, Abu Sa`eed al-Khudree and `Aasim ibn `Adiyy al-Ansaree (ra), and the wording of the hadeeth is that of Jaabir (ra):

"Two ravenous wolves which spend the night amongst sheep whose shepherd is absent, will not cause more havoc for the people than will love of status and wealth to a Believer's Deen."

The hadeeth of Ibn Abbaas (ra) narrates as, "…love of wealth" in place of "…craving."

This analogy given to us by the Prophet (saw) clearly illustrates the dangers of craving wealth and worldly status. The hadeeth explains that desire for wealth is more dangerous to man than hungry wolves are to a flock of stranded sheep. The hadeeth explains that very few sheep can escape the havoc caused by the wolves, implying that very little of a Muslim's Deen is safe in the face of his lust for wealth and status. This is a severe warning against the evil of craving wealth and status in the world.

Craving for Wealth

Craving wealth, or “Hubb Al-Dunya,” is when a person has an intense desire for wealth, relentlessly exerting effort to attain it – even if through halal (lawful) means. It was reported that this hadeeth was in response to the emergence of some elements of Hubb Al-Dunya, as Al-Tabaraani reports from `Aasim ibn `Adiyy (ra) who said,
“I bought one hundred shares from the shares of Khaybar, and that reached the Prophet (saw), so he said, ‘Two ravenous wolves remaining amongst sheep whose owner has lost them will not be more harmful than a Muslim's seeking after wealth and status will be to his Deen’.”

Based on the situation and the response by the Prophet (saw), the craving for wealth, is the extreme love for material possession that leads a man to relentlessly chase after it.

For a man to chase after wealth is to waste his efforts on something that he cannot change. The provision of every man is fixed by Allah (swt), and he cannot increase it. So, rather than running after his Rizq (something already guaranteed for him), the Believer should strive to attain a high rank in Paradise (something not already guaranteed for him). Abdullah bin Mas'ood, Abu Amamah, and Huthayfah bin Al-Yaman (RAA) narrated that the Prophet (saw) said:

"The Holy Spirit (Gibreel [as]) inspired to me that no person shall die except after they have completed their share of Rizq (wealth, sustenance, livelihood appointed for them), so fear Allah when seeking wealth" [Ibn Heban]

The wealth of this world has no lasting benefit for man. It must eventually be abandoned, and all that it brings is accountability for its possessor on the Day of Judgment. This in itself is indeed enough to show the blameworthiness of craving for wealth.

Abu Hurairah reported that Allah's Messenger (saw) said:

“A servant says, ‘My wealth, my wealth’, but out of his wealth three things are only his: whatever he eats and makes use of or by means of which he dresses himself and it wears out or he gives as charity, and this is what he stored for himself (as a reward for the Hereafter), and what is beyond this (it is of no use to you) because you are to depart and leave it for other people.” [Muslim]

This hadeeth has been narrated on the authority of Al-'Alaa' bin 'Abd al-Rahman with the same chain of narrators.
Craving after this world torments a person – he is so preoccupied with amassing wealth that he does not attain any joy or pleasure in it. Furthermore, he does not find time – due to his love of this world – for the Hereafter, and is obsessed with that which will perish, while forgetting that which will last and remain.

Purpose of Our Life

We are taught by Islam that the real objective of our existence is to worship Allah (swt) through righteous actions while living in this world. Allah (swt) revealed:

وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنْسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ (56) مَا أُرِيدُ مِنْهُمْ مِنْ رِزْقٍ وَمَا أُرِيدُ أَنْ يُطْعِمُونِ (57) إِنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الرَّزَّاقُ ذُو الْقُوَّةِ الْمَتِينُ
"I have not created the jinn and the men except for this that they should worship Me and I do not ask any sustenance of them, nor do I ask them to feed Me and Allah Himself is the Sustainer, Possessor of power and might" [TMQ 51:56 – 58]

Securing our material well being is important, even a fard (obligation) for those in a position of responsibility, but it is not the ultimate goal of this life. A Believer must never allow his thoughts and actions to be consumed by such an objective. In contrast, the secular-Capitalist mentality views economic well-being as the central focus of one’s very existence – resulting in perpetual mental anxiety, consumed by chasing the fleeting desires of this world. Islam deems the satisfaction of one’s needs as necessary and indispensable, but does not view them as the purpose of life. As Allah (swt) has warned us in the Qur’an that wealth becomes an allurement and a delusion if man loses sight of his real purpose. Allah (swt) revealed:

وَمَا الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا إِلَّا مَتَاعُ الْغُرُورِ
“The life of this world is but a delusion”[TMQ 3:185]
Therefore, the right path is to engage in worldly economic matters in the manner prescribed by Allah (swt) and His Prophet (saw), both at societal and individual level. Allah (swt) states:

وَابْتَغِ فِيمَا آَتَاكَ اللَّهُ الدَّارَ الْآَخِرَةَ وَلَا تَنْسَ نَصِيبَكَ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا

"'Seek the other world by means of that which Allah has bestowed upon you, and do not be negligent about your share in this world " [TMQ 28:77]
It is clear from the above ayah that we, as Muslims, are instructed to focus on the Akhirah (i.e. "the other world") while not forgetting about (i.e. "and do not be negligent") what we require in order to survive in this world. In other words, our minds must be preoccupied with the Akhirah to the point where we need to remind ourselves about pursuing “our share of this world.”
May Allah (swt) make us among those who fear Him in all aspects of our lives, and make us among those who will not be deceived by this dunya.

يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنَّ وَعْدَ اللَّهِ حَقٌّ فَلَا تَغُرَّنَّكُمُ الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا وَلَا يَغُرَّنَّكُمْ بِاللَّهِ الْغَرُورُ

"O people, the promise of Allah is surely true. Therefore, let not the worldly life deceive you, nor let that great deceiver deceive you concerning Allah" [TMQ 35:5]